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Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

Bangladesh Building Collapse Death Toll Rises Over 200

Briana Goodall |
April 25, 2013 | 9:42 a.m. PDT

Executive Producer

Collapsed building in Bangladesh. (Screenshot, Youtube)
Collapsed building in Bangladesh. (Screenshot, Youtube)
40 survivors were located Thursday beneath the ruble of a Bangladesh building that collapsed Wednesday, killing more than 200 people. 

According to CBC News, Gen. Mohammed Siddiqui Alam Shikder, the overseer of the rescue mission, said the 40 survivors were found trapped in one room. 12 people have been freed thus far, and rescue crews are working to help those still trapped inside. 

Cracks were reported in the walls of the building Tuesday, and local police instructed workers not to go inside the building. The garment factories, located on the fourth floor of the eight story building, ignored the warnings and continued operations. 

ALSO SEE: Bangladesh Building Collapses, Kills At Least 87

There are conflicting reports about the exact number of people that have been killed. Bodies are still being pulled from the wreckage of the Rana Plaza building in Savar. CNN reported that Maj. Gen. Abul Hassan Sarwardy, another overseer of the rescue, said, "So far, 204 bodies were retrieved and 2,013 people were rescued alive from under the debris." Local residents are assisting the rescue effort, said Reuters, using crowbars and their bare hands as tools for freeing both bodies and survivors. 

ALSO SEE: Dozens Of Workers Die In A Bangladesh Building Fire

The factories make clothing for various brands, including Wal-Mart. Employees came to work Wednesday, fearing they would lose their jobs if they did not show up. A garment manufactures' group said 3,122 people work inside the building. It is unclear how many were inside when the structure collapsed.

The owners of the building are reportedly in hiding. Abdul Halam, an official with the engineering department in Savar, said the building was only supposed to be five stories tall, but the owners illegally added the other three stories. 

ALSO SEE: Workers Continue To Die In Factories Producing Tommy Hilfiger, Gap, and Kohl's Clothing

According to USA Today, an Associated Press cameraman was able to briefly speak with a man pinned face down beneath the rubble. Mohammad Altab was trapped between concrete slabs and next to two corpses. He said, "Save us, brother. I beg you, brother. I want to live. It's so painful here… I have two children." As of press time, the rescuers have not been able to free Altab. 


8:14 pm death toll is now at 275.


Read more of Neon Tommy's coverage of Bangladesh here

Reach Executive Producer Briana Goodall here.

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