Rescue operation ends

Toll of Luweibdeh building collapse stands at 14 dead and 10 injured

(File photos: Ameer Khalifeh/Jordan News)
AMMAN — The Public Security Directorate (PSD) said early Saturday that the search for victims in the collapsed residential building in the Jabal Luweibdeh area of Amman ended after the last body was found, bringing the number of dead to 14, various media outlets reported.اضافة اعلان

Rescue teams recovered the body of a woman from under the rubble of a collapsed building early Saturday.

PSD spokesman Amer Al-Sartawi said in a press statement: “After difficult, continuous, and multi-stage search and rescue operations that lasted for 84 hours, the search and rescue teams were able to evacuate the last fatality from under the rubble.”

Meanwhile, Minister of Social Development Ayman Al-Mufleh said on Friday that the families affected by the collapse of the building will be sheltered for an “open” period. He invited Jordanians to offer donations to the affected families through the eFAWATEERcom application and other payment platforms, but said that the government “will cover all expenses to contain the crisis”.

About JD20,000 in donations were sent to victims’ families through eFAWATEERcom; by Saturday morning, the number of  donors had reached 605, according to Al-Mamlaka TV.

In related news, Secretary-General of Epidemiological Affairs at the Ministry of Health Raed Al-Shboul said that the cost of treating those injured in the building collapse will be borne by the government, including of those who were admitted to Luzmila hospital, according to Al-Ghad News.

Only two injuries were admitted to government hospitals, while the rest went to Luzmila hospital, according to Shboul, who added that only two cases are currently receiving treatment, and are in ICU.

The Amman prosecutor general opened an investigation into the incident and ordered the detention of the owner of the building, as well as of the maintenance and technical contractors.

Residents of the property said that its owner had been carrying out construction work on the ground floor, which weakened the support structure and caused cracks to appear in their apartments.

Entire families, including children, were among the dead.

Although the Greater Amman Municipality had been criticized for allegedly ignoring safety concerns about older buildings, municipality said that it was not to blame for the collapse, which was the result of “irresponsible construction inside the property”.

Director of Civil Defense, Brig. Gen. Hatem Jaber, told 60 Minutes program, which is broadcast on Jordanian television on Friday evening, that the rescue operation is not limited in time, as search and rescue teams where trying to locate a woman under the ruble, believed to be the last victim.

At a press briefing early Saturday, he said that the information available indicates that there are no people trapped under the rubble.

He pointed out that about 70 percent of the residents trapped were rescued in the first 25 hours after the building collapsed. Jaber said that all the injured were in a satisfying condition.

Head of the International Search and Rescue Team Lt. Col. Anas Al-Abadi told local media outlets that the search and rescue process took place in three stages: surface search to find the largest possible number of survivors; bringing in sniffer dogs, light equipment and cameras to search for those trapped under the rubble; iand ntroducing heavy and medium machinery to break the concrete partitions to reach the largest possible number of victims under the rubble.

He said that the plan was successful. “We will remain at the site of the accident until the completion of legal and administrative matters,” he added.

Abadi said that 200 people from the search and rescue team participated in the operation.

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