Seven persons, including a family of four, were killed and four severely injured when an unoccupied seven-storey building collapsed in Santacruz here on Friday and the debris fell on an adjoining chawl.
Search and rescue operations continued till 8pm. “The building crashed like a pack of cards. The water tank at the terrace of the Shankarlok building fell on 10 of the 22 rooms of an adjoining chawl around 10.45am,” said Sunil Krishna Gawde, an eyewitness.
The Vakola police have registered a case of accidental deaths and are probing the incident. “We are recording statements of the residents. If we find negligence on the part of anybody, we will initiate action against them,” said Zhunzarrao Gharal, assistant commissioner of police (Vakola division).
Administration officials said a legal notice to vacate the crumbling Shankarlok building, which housed two families, was served last week. Though the building’s residents were first served the notice in 2007, one of the occupants -- an advocate -- had initiated litigation as he was not ready to vacate the building, BMC officials said. Except two families on the ground floor, all other residents had vacated their flats after the notice was served in 2007.