George building collapseGeorge Building collapse-Image Source@Zoomsouthafrica

In a heartbreaking update, the death toll from the George building collapse has surged to 33, with 19 individuals still missing nearly a week after the disaster.

The George Municipality confirmed on Tuesday, May 14, that the death count had risen from the previous day as rescue operations entered their 187th hour.

The five-story building, situated on a construction site in George, collapsed on Wednesday, May 8, trapping 81 workers inside. According to reports from the Sowetan, of the 33 deceased, 27 were men and 6 were women.

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Ongoing Rescue and Recovery Efforts: Entering Week Two

As the second week of rescue operations begins, efforts to find survivors and recover bodies continue tirelessly. The collapse happened at 75 Victoria Street, where the partially constructed building unexpectedly gave way.

Since the initial emergency call on May 11, 2024, Psychosocial Support Practitioners have been present on-site, providing emotional, social, and mental health support in Chewa, Portuguese, and Shona to those affected by the tragedy.

So far, 61 people have been rescued, with 12 of them currently receiving medical treatment in hospitals.

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Investigation into Unskilled and Undocumented Workers

The exact cause of the building collapse remains unknown, with an investigation underway to determine the factors that led to the disaster. NeoTrend Developer, the construction company responsible for the site, has pledged full cooperation with authorities during the investigation.

Additionally, police are probing allegations that some of the workers on the site were unskilled and undocumented, which adds a complex dimension to the ongoing investigation.

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