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Mexico Church: Ten Dead After Tamaulipas Roof Collapse

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At least 10 people have been killed after a church roof collapsed in northern Mexico, local officials say.

Forty-nine people were taken to hospital after the collapse at Santa Cruz church in the coastal city of Ciudad Madero in Tamaulipas state.

At least two children are reported to be among those killed.

Around 100 people were attending Mass at the time, police said. Some reports suggested a baptism ceremony was being held there.

Dozens of people were left trapped inside the church following the incident. Images on social media showed the church building in ruins as people crowded around the rubble, desperately searching for those who were missing.

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The governor of Tamaulipas, Américo Villarreal, later said that all the missing had been accounted for, according to the Agence France-Presse (AFP) news agency.

Local journalist Franc Contreras told the BBC World Service’s Newsday programme that the collapse happened at a key moment in the service.

“The church was packed with about 100 people, and people were lined up to take the communion – of course that’s sort of the climax of the Catholic Mass – and that’s when the roof came down on top of them; bricks, concrete, and of course steel support structures coming down on top of the people,” he said.

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He added that according to Red Cross officials the roof came down on pews in the church, allowing the possibility that anyone trapped there could survive in air pockets.

People were said to be arriving with shovels and pickaxes to try to move the debris.

Later posts showed the emergency services were at the scene, following the collapse on Sunday afternoon.

Calls were made on social media for medical and rescue materials to help those searching for survivors.

Authorities were said to be requesting silence from those gathered at the scene so that they could hear if anyone trapped inside was calling for help.

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Source:  BBC


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