Up to eight feared dead in Marseille apartment building collapse

08 November, 2018, 23:18 | Author: Myra Gill
  • Two buildings collapsed suddenly not far from Marseille city centre

The body of a fifth victim has been found in the rubble of two dilapidated buildings that collapsed this week in the French city of Marseille, the fire brigade said on Wednesday (Nov 7).

Prosecutors said the bodies of two men and a woman were found separately under the 15-metre pile of rubble on Rue d'Aubagne, a narrow shopping street which now resembles the scene of an natural disaster. In total, according to the authorities, 5 to 8 people might have been buried under the rubble.

Fire crews deliberately brought down an adjacent third building that was also in danger of collapse.

One of the fallen buildings was boarded-up, but possibly used by squatters, CNN reported.

Google Maps images taken in recent months showed the collapsed buildings had large cracks in their facades.

"People died for nothing, even though we knew".

Only one of the buildings was occupied, as the two others were in such a bad state that they had been condemned.


At number 65 rue d'Augagne, nine of the ten apartments were full.

"The most important is saving lives", Castaner said at the scene.

"It could have been me", the 25-year-old philosophy student said, visibly shaken. "It could have been me", she said.

Residents said Tuesday the structural risks of the buildings and others like them were widely known, but that city officials did little when alerted about them. She told AFP that she had stayed with her parents the night before the collapse because numerous doors in the building would not close.

The neighbourhood is home to many buildings in a similarly dilapidated condition, some of them run by slum landlords. A 2015 report by the government found that 100,000 residents of Marseille "were living in housing that was unsafe to their health or security", according to AFP.

Djaffar Nour, who was shopping down the street, said the collapse had happened in "a matter of seconds".

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