Sunday, October 09, 2005

Rescuers find survivors in Pakistani flats

Rescuers found at least two survivors clinging to life in the ruins of an apartment complex in the Pakistani capital on Sunday after a major earthquake brought two blocks crashing down on residents. Twenty-three bodies had been found but about 90 people were pulled alive from the Margala Towers blocks where expatriate workers and middle-class Pakistanis lived, officials said. A military official said about 50 people might still be trapped.

A boy was pulled out alive some 24 hours after the quake hit, prompting cheers from rescue workers who said others were still alive under the rubble. A short time earlier, another rescue worker said a man was found alive. He had asked for juice as workers fought to free him. The tower blocks were the only buildings to collapse in Islamabad, about 95 km (60 miles) southwest of the epicentre of the 7.6 magnitude quake that hit at about 8:50 a.m. (0350 GMT) on Saturday.

Distraught relatives and friends of the missing waited nearby as rescuers scoured the debris.
The final toll from the collapsed flats would only be known when all the debris was cleared, and that might take another 12 hours, a rescue official said. A British rescue worker said the consistency of the ruins was cause for optimism. Read More....

Source: Reuters
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