Published: Thu, November 08, 2018
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Marseille building collapse: fifth body found in rubble

Marseille building collapse: fifth body found in rubble

Eight hours later, another neighboring building collapsed.

A local resident, Toufik Ben Rhouma, blamed Marseille city hall for the disaster.

The dead include two women and three men, prosecutor Xavier Tarabeux told AFP. One house had 5 floors, the other 6.

A spokesman for the Marseille Firefighters told The Associated Press that a female body was recovered, in addition to a man's body they found earlier.

Authorities had evacuated several dozen residents from neighbouring buildings as a precaution.

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Images of the buildings before they collapsed, visible on Google Street View, showed that one of the buildings was clearly in poor fix, with boarded-up windows and large visible cracks on the facade before it collapsed.

A young bar waiter, with tears in his eyes, watched the scene and anxious about an Italian woman who lived in the building.

He added he had seen two other people arriving to visit one of the tenants in the building, which had 12 apartments, nine of them occupied.

Abdou Ali, 34, came in search of his mother after she did not come to collect her youngest son from school on Monday afternoon. She told AFP that she had stayed with her parents the night before the collapse because numerous doors in the building would not close.

"I haven't had any news", he said, wandering among the rescuers.

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Marseille authorities launched a vast upgrade plan for the city centre in 2011.

Firefighters in the southern French city of Marseille say they have found a third body in the ruins of two buildings that collapsed a day ago as the rescue operation continues.

According 2015, about 100 thousand inhabitants of Marseille, live in housing that threatens their health or safety.

"It's unthinkable that such things happen in our time", said Christian Gouverneur, who owns a flat in an apartment block opposite the collapsed buildings.

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