4 workers die, 20 hurt in Cambodian building collapse

Officials say at least four workers died when a building under construction in southern Cambodia collapsed, trapping workers in the rubble

BySopheng Cheang Associated Press
January 03, 2020, 10:35 AM

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia -- A building under construction in southern Cambodia collapsed Friday, killing at least four workers and trapping others inside, police said.

The seven-story building in the coastal province of Kep collapsed while around 20 workers were inside. By nightfall, 20 injured workers had been rescued, provincial authorities said.

Nguon Samet, deputy police chief for Kep province, said the building apparently collapsed when cement was being poured on its top level.

Recovery operations were continuing with debris being removed to try to locate any people still missing.

Prime Minister Hun Sen posted on his Facebook page that he would “depart to Kep province shortly to lead the rescue team, helping to rescue the workers that got trapped under the collapsed building.”

The collapse of a building under construction last June in Sihanoukville, another coastal province, killed 28 construction workers and injured 26 others, underlining concerns about the area's rapid development and inattention to safety. The coast has been rapidly built up to cater to a booming tourist industry.

In December, a Buddhist temple collapsed while under construction in Siem Reap, home of Cambodia’s famed Angkor temples, killing at least three people and injuring 13 others, including two monks.

According to police, that accident also occurred when workers were pouring cement on the top level of the building.

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