x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Hotel collapses in India's Secunderabad, killing at least 13

About 25 people were working at the hotel, located on a busy road in Secunderabad, when a kitchen wall gave way, triggering a larger collapse and burying staff under debris.

Indian rescue workers look for survivors at the site of a collapsed building in Hyderabad.
Indian rescue workers look for survivors at the site of a collapsed building in Hyderabad.

SECUNDERABAD // At least 13 people were killed and another 17 injured yesterday when a two-storey hotel collapsed in the southern city of Secunderabad.

Rescue workers were searching for survivors through tonnes of rubble hours after the collapse in Andhra Pradesh state.

Most of the victims were understood to be employees of the hotel, and local residents reported that one of them was the hotel owner's son.

Seventeen people were rescued from the debris and taken to hospital, where three of them were described as being in critical condition.

About 25 people were working at the hotel, an old building on a busy road, when a kitchen wall gave way, triggering a larger collapse and burying staff and others under debris.

"The building was very old and the walls showed cracks, according to people working near by," said local police official B Surender said.

It was not known how many people – hotel employees, customers and others – were still trapped in the rubble. Rescuers set up lights to continue the search through the night.

"The rescue operations are continuing and as a precautionary measure we are taking the help of experts in removing those trapped under the debris," said the city's police chief, Anurag Sharma.

Residents joined rescue workers, who used diggers, cranes and electric cutters, in trying to clear away the debris.

Family members of hotel workers still missing were waiting at the site for news.

Several buildings have collapsed in India in recent months, many of them apartment blocks in the financial capital Mumbai.