Istanbul building collapse leaves one dead, several others injured

Istanbul building collapse leaves one dead, several others injured

Istanbul building collapse leaves one dead, several others injured

An apartment building on June 2 collapsed in Istanbul’s Küçükçekmece district, killing one resident trapped under the rubble, with teams rescuing eight people.

The three-story building collapsed at around 8:40 a.m., as authorities have yet to determine the cause of the incident. The ground floor of the building housed a shop, the top floor an office, while families resided on the intermediate floors.

Rescue teams and firefighters managed to pull seven people out of the rubble shortly after the incident. After about an hour of efforts, the body of one person was retrieved from the debris. At around 11:50 a.m., the last trapped individual was rescued, albeit injured.

Images from a camera across the street showed passengers waiting to board a public minibus at the time of the collapse narrowly escape being struck by falling debris.

Providing information about the collapse, Istanbul Governor Davut Gül mentioned that two of the injured are in critical condition, announcing that an investigation has been initiated into the incident.

"There is no determined cause for the collapse of the building constructed in 1988. Therefore, we will inform you in the coming hours and days. Our Chief Public Prosecutor is at the scene. Subsequent legal and administrative processes will proceed,” he said.

In a written statement, Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change Minister Mehmet Özhaseki confirmed that the building was constructed 36 years ago.

One and a half floors were illegally added after its construction, the minister revealed.

"Initial inspections on-site indicate that the building, constructed in 1988, was built without adhering to architectural and engineering standards, using sea sand in its construction and subsequent interventions that compromised the building's structural integrity," Özhaseki stated.

Küçükçekmece Mayor Kemal Çelebi informed private broadcaster CNN Türk that the top floor of the collapsed building was illegally constructed.

"The top floor is illegal, there is no column cutting. The Istanbul Municipality conducts the inspections of old buildings. The condition of this building was not determined. Some residents are hesitant to have their buildings inspected, fearing what they would do if they were to collapse," Çelebi remarked.

One of the building owners in the neighborhood told Demirören News Agency that they had witnessed discussions on urban renewal in anticipation of the long-awaited major Marmara earthquake.

He claimed that many buildings in the neighborhood had been evacuated by agreeing to participate in urban renewal, and local authorities had cut off electricity and gas flow to many structures in the vicinity.

However, the owner of the building that collapsed on June 2 declined to join the project due to "personal reasons," he said.

Urban transformation projects involve the demolition of buildings in earthquake-prone areas, particularly Istanbul, and the construction of earthquake-resistant structures in their place.

AFAD, Fire department,