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Mon. Sep 5, 2016 News from Israel

  • 2 killed, 24 wounded; 5 still missing in Tel Aviv building collapse
  • Dramatic footage of underground rescue
  • Rescuers in race against time for the 5 trapped in garage rubble

The roof of a 4-story parking garage in Tel Aviv collapsed Monday morning. The incident occurred at a parking garage on Habarzel Street in Ramat HaHayal near Assuta Medical Center. 2 people were killed and 24 people were injured. The victims were taken to several nearby hospitals, including Ichilov, Beilinson, Tel Hashomer and Asuta, the latter of which is located next door to the scene.

The roof of a 4-story parking garage in Tel Aviv collapsed Monday morning. The incident occurred at a parking garage on Habarzel Street in Ramat HaHayal near Assuta Medical Center. 2 people were killed and 24 people were injured. The victims were taken to several nearby hospitals, including Ichilov, Beilinson, Tel Hashomer and Asuta, the latter of which is located next door to the scene. Police officers as well as search and rescue teams are currently at the scene and searching for 5 people who are believed to be trapped underneath the rubble. “It felt like an earthquake,” said an eyewitness who works in a nearby building. It is still unclear what caused the parking garage to collapse but at the moment, the access to the entire area has been blocked off. Hundreds of emergency response personnel were digging through tons of rubble as the sun set in a “race against time” to locate and rescue the construction workers believed to be buried under the collapsed parking garage. Rescue services at the scene managed to extract two of the trapped people, while the locations of remaining construction workers “have been approximated and are being monitored,” the IDF Home Front Command said in a statement. The search and rescue efforts by Home Front Command police officers, firefighters, medics, doctors and soldiers were expected to last through the night. Access to the trapped workers was complicated as the four-story parking garage is located entirely underground. “Three of the floors definitely collapsed, but at this point the fourth floor is unreachable,” police said. A crane and a special sand-suctioning truck have been brought in to remove some 250 tons of rubble from the scene, but there is still “a lot of work being done by hand. The construction site is still considered hazardous. The portions of the parking garage that have not collapsed “are dangerous and unstable,” according to an engineering assessment. Police Investigators opened a probe into what caused the cave-in, with early indications pointing to an engineering failure. Africa Israel Investments, whose subsidiary Danya Cebus operated the construction site, says it is investigating the cause of the collapse. The Tel Aviv municipality who owns the property issued a statement on the structural collapse clarifying that the site was under the administration of the Africa Israel not the municipality.

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