In a devastating turn of events, a multi-storey building in Abuja collapsed amidst a heavy downpour on Wednesday night, leaving several people trapped under the rubble. As initially reported by Naija News, the extent of casualties remains uncertain, with fears of many still unaccounted for and possibly dead.
The collapsed structure was a significant one in the locality, housing several apartments on its upper levels while the ground floor was bustling with shops. As rain poured down on that fateful night, the structure gave way, plunging its occupants into chaos and trapping many under its debris.
In a press briefing on Thursday morning, the Director-General of the Federal Emergency Management Authority, Dr. Abbass Idriss, provided an update on the ongoing rescue operations. He confirmed that 37 individuals had been successfully rescued from the site and were immediately taken to various medical facilities across Abuja for immediate medical attention.
However, the news was not entirely positive. Dr. Idriss somberly reported that two individuals succumbed to fatal injuries sustained during the collapse. He emphasized that evacuation and rescue operations at the site are ongoing, and efforts are being ramped up to ensure that all trapped victims are located and rescued.
The gravity of the situation demands collaboration, and the response has been swift. Several rescue agencies have teamed up to tackle the crisis. “Officials from the FCT Emergency Management Agency, FEMA, Fire Service, and the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) are joining forces to ensure the swift and efficient rescue and evacuation of more individuals potentially trapped under the debris,” Dr. Idriss explained.
Furthermore, the Director-General emphasized the need for intensifying the search operations. He mentioned that the FEMA Search and Rescue team is currently awaiting the arrival of excavators to dig through the rubble, ensuring no one remains trapped. This amplifies the urgency and the scale of the disaster, requiring heavy machinery to sift through the wreckage.
Dr. Idriss also pointed out the collective effort being put forth at the ground zero. “A combined team comprising the FCT Emergency Management Agency, the Federal Road Safety Corps, FCT Police Command, and the VIO is working tirelessly at the site, coordinating and carrying out rescue operations,” he added.
The collapse of the multi-storey building has sent shockwaves across the nation, highlighting the importance of stringent construction standards, especially in areas prone to natural calamities. As the community grapples with the aftermath of this tragedy, the focus remains on rescuing as many victims as possible and providing them with the necessary medical and emotional support.
The coming days will be crucial, as rescue operations continue and the scale of the disaster becomes clearer. Investigations will likely follow to determine the cause of the collapse and to ensure that such a tragedy does not recur.
For now, the city unites in hope and prayer, wishing for the safe return of those still missing and mourning the lives tragically cut short by this unforeseen disaster.