Thursday 8 December 2016

At least two people dead after building collapses in popular Tenerife tourist resort

Nine 'trapped in rubble' after building collapses in Tenerife

Scott D'Arcy

Published 14/04/2016 | 14:00

Handout photo issued by the Canarian Weekly of emergency services at the scene following the collapse of a four-storey building in Los Cristianos, Tenerife
Handout photo issued by the Canarian Weekly of emergency services at the scene following the collapse of a four-storey building in Los Cristianos, Tenerife
Handout photo issued by the Canarian Weekly of the scene following the collapse of a four-storey building in Los Cristianos, Tenerife
Handout photo issued by the Canarian Weekly of the scene following the collapse of a four-storey building in Los Cristianos, Tenerife
Handout photo issued by the Canarian Weekly of the scene following the collapse of a four-storey building in Los Cristianos, Tenerife

At least two people are reported to have died following the collapse of a building in a Tenerife resort popular with Irish and British tourists.

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Emergency services are searching the rubble for survivors after the four-storey building collapsed in Los Cristianos, in the south of the Canary Island.

Handout photo issued by the Canarian Weekly of the scene following the collapse of a four-storey building in Los Cristianos, Tenerife
Handout photo issued by the Canarian Weekly of the scene following the collapse of a four-storey building in Los Cristianos, Tenerife

At least one person was killed and three people injured, according to local newspaper Diairo de Avisos.

Officials have not confirmed the death, with the Canary Islands Emergency Co-ordinator and Safety Centre saying only that one woman was seriously injured and a man and a woman suffered less severe injures.

It is unclear if any Britons are involved.

A Foreign Office spokeswoman said: "We are in contact with local authorities and urgently seeking more information following a building collapse in Tenerife."

Some 15 people were said to be in the residential building, which is near the Hide Away Pub, at the time of the collapse at around 9.30am local time on Thursday.

Nearby buildings were evacuated as a precaution and the island's Military Emergency Unit was deployed.

Images on social media showed crowds gathering as firefighters stood among the debris. In one video bystanders can be seen rushing towards the scene amid plumes of dust.

A spokesman for the Spanish Red Cross said it had sent volunteers to help the emergency services with the search.

The owner of the Hide Away Pub, Javier Velazquez, 58, lives in flat above the bar next to the affected building and said his terrace had been "obliterated".

He told the Sun: "No-one was on the terrace because I don't open till 5pm but if this had happened in the evening, it would have been far worse.

"Around a third of my customers are British and 95% are Europeans from places like Italy, Belgium and Scandinavia.

"The noise when the building collapsed was tremendous. There was work going on in an old commercial premises on the first floor and I fear what's happened could be something to do with that."

He added that there were three separate collapses and he believed a Spanish woman had died.

Tenerife, and the south in particular, is popular with British holidaymakers, with nearly 1.7 million Britons visiting the island in 2014, according to official tourism figures.

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