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Deaths in Kolkata flyover collapse turn attention to construction industry

Firefighters and rescue workers search for victims at the site of an under-construction flyover after it collapsed in Kolkata. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

Deaths in Kolkata flyover collapse turn attention to construction industry

More than 20 people are dead and almost 100 injured after a flyover, under construction in the Indian city of Kolkata (formerly Calcutta), collapsed.

The incident took place in an area near Girish Park, one of Kolkata’s most densely populated neighbourhoods and as a result many people are feared trapped under the concrete and steel bridge. There are reports people were living in makeshift homes under the structure, and many people were also caught while driving underneath.

Images show residents initially using their bare hands to help the rescue effort before cranes were brought in to try and lift the bridge.

Firefighters and rescue workers search for victims. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

Firefighters and rescue workers search for victims. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

 

The army and national disaster agency in India have also joined the rescue operation.

The 2km-long flyover has been under construction since 2009 and missed several deadlines for completion.

The causes of the disaster were not immediately clear but the company in charge of the construction, IVRCL, said it would cooperate with investigators.

Safety issues and the use of substandard materials have plagued construction projects in India.

A general view of the collapsed flyover in Kolkata. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

A general view of the collapsed flyover in Kolkata. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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