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Video: 14 killed, 74 injured in huge billboard collapse

Ambulance. (Dreamstime/TNS)
May 14, 2024

A huge billboard killed 14 people and injured 74 others after it collapsed on pedestrians at a gas station in India on Monday evening.

Fox News reported that Mumbai city officials confirmed that a 100-foot-tall billboard collapsed on top of a gas station in Ghatkopar, which is a suburb of Mumbai. According to Fox News, the billboard collapsed during a major thunderstorm with high wind gusts and a heavy rainfall.

According to Reuters, over 100 people were initially trapped by the collapsed billboard. City officials noted that at least 47 individuals were rescued from the scene of the billboard collapse during the night, and the rescue operation continued throughout Tuesday morning to search for anyone else who might have been trapped by the unexpected collapse.

“Medical treatment is currently being provided to 44 injured individuals, with 31 already discharged after receiving treatment,” officials said in a statement obtained by Fox News. “Unfortunately, 14 people succumbed to death in this mishap.”

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Mohsen Shahedi, a senior National Disaster Response Force officer, told Reuters that the rescue operation was “very challenging due to the weight of the structure and the presence of flammable liquid and gas at the site.”

In a statement obtained by Reuters, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), which is the city’s municipal body, claimed the agency that owned the billboard did not possess a valid permit for the billboard. The billboard, which was approximately 14,400 square feet, was about nine times larger than the maximum size that is permitted by the BMC.

In light of Monday’s fatal incident, the BMC said it was requiring the agency to immediately remove the rest of its billboards, which are also called hoardings in India.

Eknath Shinde, chief minister of the Maharashtra state, stated, “To prevent such accidents from happening again, instructions have been given to conduct a structural audit of all hoardings in Mumbai and immediately take down dangerous ones.”

A video posted on X, formerly Twitter, shows the moment the billboard collapsed on Monday, inflicting devastation on the community.