4 prop­erty own­ers de­tained af­ter build­ing col­lapses killed 22 peo­ple

China Daily (USA) - - CHINA - By XIN­HUA in Hangzhou

Po­lice have de­tained four res­i­den­tial build­ing own­ers af­ter their rented struc­tures col­lapsed, killing 22 peo­ple in Wen­zhou, Zhe­jiang prov­ince, onMon­day.

About 800 res­cue work­ers fin­ished the search in Lucheng in­dus­trial dis­trict on Tues­day.

Po­lice are in­ves­ti­gat­ing the cause of the col­lapses.

The four build­ings were built by Zhongyangtu vil­lagers in the 1970s and 1980s. Five ad­ja­cent houses built in the same pe­riod re­main stand­ing, but res­cue work­ers are now de­mol­ish­ing them to avoid fur­ther dis­as­ters.

The run­down res­i­den­tial struc­tures were all rented mi­grant work­ers.

YanYongfa, a mi­grant­worker from Guizhou prov­ince and one of the six sur­vivors, said he was asleep when there was a huge bang, and he was plunged into de­bris. He said the old vil­lage houses were at­trac­tive to mi­grant­work­er­swith­alowrent of 420 yuan ($63) per month. to

Western Wen­zhou is an in­dus­trial clus­ter that at­tracts many ru­ral la­bor­ers look­ing for work.

Ami­grant worker sur­named Zhang said he has worked in the area for 19 years. Many of the vil­lage struc­tures orig­i­nally had four sto­ries, but the own­ers con­verted them to five or six sto­ries.

“The old build­ings were part of the gov­ern­ment’s ur­ban plan for re­con­struc­tion,” he said.

Af­ter the build­ings sev­eral streets cor­doned off.

Zhang Geng, mayor of Wen­zhou, vowed on Tues­day that the city gov­ern­ment would thor­oughly check all col­lapsed, were run­down res­i­den­tial build­ings and start re­con­struc­tion as soon as pos­si­ble.

Wen­zhou was af­fected by strong rain­fall brought by TyphoonMer­anti, the strong­est storm of the year, in­Septem­ber. Res­cue work­ers said the build­ings and ground had been soaked by rain­wa­ter, partly con­tribut­ing to the col­lapse. © 2016 China Daily All Rights Re­served Vol. 36 — No. 10991

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