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Toll rises in Bangladesh building collapse

24 April 2013, 11:47

Dhaka - At least 82 people have died and 700 are injured after an eight-storey building housing several garment factories collapsed on the outskirts of Bangladesh's capital on Wednesday, a doctor said.

Hiralal Roy, a senior emergency ward doctor at the nearby Enam hospital where victims are being transferred, said: "The death toll is now 82. At least 700 people have also been treated at the hospital."

The Somoy channel reported that cracks had appeared at the building on Tuesday afternoon, triggering a stampede from panicked workers that left 10 people injured. AFP was unable to immediately confirm the report.

Building collapses are common in impoverished Bangladesh as developers often flout the government's construction code in the building of multi-storey buildings.

More than 70 people were killed after a multi-storey garment factory collapsed in the same area in 2005. In November at least 13 people were killed after an under-construction flyover fell in the port city of Chittagong.

Bangladesh has the second-biggest garment industry in the world, providing cheap clothes for major Western brands and retailers which benefit from its abundant low-cost labour.

But the industry is plagued by regular accidents and frequent demonstrations from workers demanding better wages and working conditions.

In November, a fire at a garment factory on the outskirts of Dhaka killed 111 workers in the industry's worst accident.


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