14 dead in Jordan building collapse as search ends

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AMMAN: Rescuers in Jordan’s capital Amman retrieved the body of a woman from the wreckage of a collapsed building on Tuesday, bringing the death toll from the incident to 14, according to local authorities.

The Public Security Department declared the end of the search and rescue effort at the site on Saturday, amid reports that the woman whose body was discovered earlier this morning was the last person on the list of missing people.

According to the administration, at least 25 individuals were inside the structure when it fell.

According to PSD, a four-story residential structure in Amman’s El-Luweibdeh district collapsed on Tuesday, killing 14 people and injuring ten others.

According to Civil Defense Chief Hatem Jaber, at least 350 civil defense rescuers had been working on removing concrete slabs and carrying debris in search of lives, describing the endeavor as a “relentless operation that lasted 85 hours.”

The Amman prosecutor general launched an investigation after the incident and detained the building’s owner, as well as maintenance and technical contractors.

Residents said that the property’s owner had been doing construction on the ground floor, which had deteriorated the support system and caused fractures to form inside units.

A building resident who was washing his car on the street outside when the building fell told the government-owned Al-Mamlakah TV that “only one day” before the accident, he had alerted the building’s owner that the construction work was causing damage to his apartment on the first floor.

“He (the building’s owner) informed me that he would finish tomorrow, and tomorrow he truly finished us all,” the survivor recalled with irony mingled with anguish.

According to the Greater Amman Municipality, the building is about 50 years old.

Although the municipality was chastised for disregarding safety concerns around older buildings, GAM claimed that it was not to fault for the collapse, which was caused by “irresponsible development inside the property.”

Jordan’s King Abdullah presided over a meeting at the National Center for Security and Crisis Management upon his return from France last Wednesday.

The king demanded that all people affected by the residential building collapse receive the required medical attention and support.

He also advocated for a broader understanding of how to manage older structures securely.

Hours before Jordanian rescue workers were about to complete their operation, social media users were outraged after a performance was held at the Roman Amphitheater, a venue close to the collapsed structure.

Users on social media claimed that holding a performance while the hunt for the missing was still ongoing was wrong.

In statements to Al Arabiya, the Jordanian government denied any involvement in the performance, claiming that it was organized by a private company. It further stated that the Municipality of Amman had nothing to involvement with the concert.

Source: Arab News

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