Eight Feared Dead After Two Buildings Collapse in France's Marseille
Google Maps images taken in recent months showed the two collapsed buildings, in the working-class neighbourhood of Noailles, had had large visible cracks in their facades.
French rescue workers are seen near rubble after buildings collapsed in central Marseille, France. (Reuters)
Marseille (France): As many as eight people may have died in the southern French city of Marseille in two building collapses, officials said on Tuesday after the first body was pulled out from the wreckage.
Rescuers worked throughout the night to look for victims in the rubble of two dilapidated apartment blocks, which collapsed suddenly on Monday morning not far from the centre of the Mediterranean port city.
There are between five to eight people missing, Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said late on Monday, with authorities trying to trace five residents and three other people who had been invited to the buildings.
"The most important thing is saving lives," Castaner added from the scene. "During the first clearing operations, we've found some pockets of air that means we still have some hope of finding and identifying a survivor."
The first victim — a man — was pulled from the wreckage on Tuesday, prosecutor Xavier Tarabeux said, adding that he needed to be identified.
Google Maps images taken in recent months showed the two collapsed buildings, in the working-class neighbourhood of Noailles, had had large visible cracks in their facades. One of them had been condemned and, with its windows boarded up, was well-secured and in theory unoccupied, officials said.
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