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Tuesday, July 16, 2024

CCTV Captures Building Collapse in George, Many People Feared Trapped

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At least 59 people are feared trapped under rubble after a building under construction collapsed in Victoria Street, George, in the Western Cape

CCTV footage in the vicinity shows the building collapsing around 14:09, with a huge cloud of dust billowing upwards. Municipal communication manager Chantel Edwards-Klose confirmed that multiple people were injured.

Emergency services were on site and the municipality said the road had been closed to allow ambulances to enter, due to “multiple patients”.

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George municipality spokesperson Ntobeko Mangqwengqwe said: “It is a building next to the municipality. The structure was about a four to five-storey building. It looked like a block of flats. At the moment, we don’t have the exact number of injuries. Our emergency personnel and local ambulances are on site.”

CCTV Captures Building Collapse in George, Many People Feared Trapped

Edwards-Klose said: “… the municipal disaster services and several other stakeholders are currently busy with a building collapse on Victoria Street involving multiple patients.

“Should any member of the public wish to provide drinking water, Lucozade, wine gums, or any food for the services while they are on site, they must please deliver via Ivy Street at 79 Victoria St, Delplan Consulting.

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“A municipal official will be on hand in front of this building to collect any contributions and distribute it to the service officials.”

The municipality opened the foyer of the main municipal hall to accommodate family members of the construction team, who were on site at the time of the incident.

Herman Pieters, of the Garden Route District Municipality, said firefighters were dispatched to assist.

Gift of the Givers representative in George, Mario Ferreira, said their team arrived about two hours after the collapse.

Ferreira said four people were removed and rushed to hospital.

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“Rescue teams are battling to remove more injured persons from the rubble. We don’t know the reason for the collapse. It is a five-storey building that collapsed while workers were inside.

“We are arranging a soup kitchen. Our rescue team is on standby in Cape Town, waiting to be called.”

The Western Cape government is closely monitoring, and will be sending resources to assist the emergency response.

Premier Alan Winde and relevant provincial ministers were being briefed on the incident.

“All the necessary support has been offered to emergency personnel to expedite the response. Now, officials are focused on saving lives. This is our top priority at this stage,” Winde said.

He urged the public to allow emergency services officials the space to carry out their duties, and not put their own lives at risk by travelling to the site.

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