Building Collapses in Nigeria
Apr. 28, 1999
LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) _ An apartment building collapsed Wednesday in Nigeria, trapping a crowd of people who had sought shelter there from the rain, state radio and witnesses said.
Rescue workers were combing through the rubble of the two-story building, and at least three bodies were recovered by Wednesday evening, the radio said. It said five survivors had been rescued.
The radio report initially said dozens of people were trapped in the building. However, witnesses later said there were far fewer. A reporter with the Lagos-based Guardian newspaper said as few as a dozen victims could remain trapped.
It was unlikely that an accurate total would be compiled until Thursday morning.
Firefighters and onlookers clawed through the rubble with shovels and their bare hands in hopes of finding more survivors, whose cries could be heard above the din of the rescue effort.
Later, a bulldozer and other construction equipment was brought to the scene.
The radio report said a crowd of people was standing at a bus stop in the Ojuelegba neighborhood of Lagos when it began to rain. Trying to get out of the downpour, they took shelter in the nearby building, which was under construction.
The report said police were searching for the building's owner.
Lagos is plagued by such collapses, with poorly constructed buildings falling apart in the rainy season.