The roof of a church in the coastal city of Ciudad Madero in northern Mexico collapsed during Mass on Sunday, killing at least nine people and injuring about 50 community members, including a four-month-old baby. Rescuers continue to search for other survivors and victims.
The forces crawled under the collapsed roof panels, and dogs were brought in to assist in the search. The country's Red Cross estimates that the chances of locating the missing in good condition are high, as the ceiling collapsed near the benches, which could create pockets of air for those who need to be rescued from the rubble.
#Update : This is the aftermath of the collapsed church building in Mexico.
100 people where reported to be inside the church during the service, but reports of casualties by the police had it that 9 persons lost their lives while 40 others were critically Injured and are... pic.twitter.com/H4s92NzpB3
— Russian Monitor (@mperomedia) October 2, 2023
Church seats after the collapse, Photo: Reuters
During the search, the rescue forces decided to return to the old search method, even before they began using dogs to locate the wounded and dead - and therefore those present at the disaster scene were asked to keep quiet in order to hear distressed voices of trapped people.
Local police said about 100 people were in the church at the time of the collapse, which was apparently caused by a "structural failure." Among the injured: a four-month-old baby, three five-year-old children and two nine-year-old children. According to the local police, three of the dead were children. The number of young victims may have been due to the fact that baptism was supposed to take place in the church.
"Devastating news from Ciudad Madero, Mexico. Our thoughts and prayers are with those affected by the tragic church collapse. 🙏🇲🇽 #CiudadMadero #Mexico #SafetyFirst" pic.twitter.com/MXJiveBjAN
— cedric rathey (@ced2k23) October 2, 2023
Photos published by local media showed what appeared to be a concrete and brick structure as parts of the roof fell to the ground. Security camera footage from one block away showed the unusual roof with its gabled figurines as it collapsed.
Building collapses are common in Mexico during earthquakes, but the National Seismological Service did not report seismic activity strong enough to cause such damage at the time of the collapse, and there was no immediate indication of an explosion.
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