Nine dead, 20 trapped after Mexico church collapses


mexico church collapse

MEXICO: Nine people are reported to have been killed and some 20 others trapped after a church roof collapsed in Mexico.

Local media said 49 people were taken to hospital, after the roof of Ciudad Madero’s Santa Cruz church fell in.

Police in the coastal state of Tamaulipas said around 100 people were at a mass at the time of the collapse. Local media reported it was a baptism.

A number of children are believed to be amongst those trapped and rescue efforts are ongoing.

Images on social media showed the church building in ruins as people crowded around the rubble, desperately searching for those who were trapped inside.

Local journalist Franc Contreras told the BBC World Service’s Newsday programme that the collapse happened at a key moment in the church service.

“The church was packed with about a hundred people, and people were lined up to take the communion – of course that’s sort of the climax of the Catholic mass – and that’s when the roof came down on top of them; bricks, concrete, and of course steel support structures coming down on top of the people,” he said.

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He added that according to Red Cross officials the roof came down on pews in the church, allowing the possibility that anyone trapped there could survive in air pockets.

People were said to be arriving with shovels and pickaxes to try to move the debris.

Later posts showed the emergency services were at the scene, following the collapse on Sunday afternoon.

Calls were made on social media for medical and rescue materials to help those searching for survivors.

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