Officials: house collapse in China crushes 7

AP News
Posted: May 03, 2013 8:19 AM

BEIJING (AP) — A two-story house in central China collapsed Friday morning while being lifted off its foundation, crushing seven people to death and injuring 21 others, local officials said.

Dozens of people were helping to move the house, which sat on low-lying ground in Hedao village, when it collapsed, the Yanjin county government said on its website. By late afternoon, rescue crews finished searching the site, retrieving two bodies and sending to area hospitals 26 others, five of whom later died, the government said.

The state-run Xinhua News Agency said at the time of the accident, a 37-person construction crew, mostly comprised of women, was working at the site in the village, in central Henan province about 650 kilometers (400 miles) south of Beijing.

The government and state media accounts did not say whether the house was being moved to a different location or just being placed on a more elevated foundation.

The county government said the homeowner had hired a construction company from a neighboring county without proper experience for the job. After the accident, police detained the chief labor contractor as part of their investigation, the government said.