Six Dead in Philadelphia Building Collapse, at Least 13 Injured - KiiiTV.com South Texas, Corpus Christi, Coastal Bend

Six Dead in Philadelphia Building Collapse, at Least 13 Injured

Posted: Updated:

(CNN) - A vacant building being demolished collapsed onto a thrift store in Philadelphia early Wednesday, killing six people and trapping more than a dozen under rubble, officials said.

Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter said late Wednesday night the deceased were five women and a man, but did not release additional information.

Soon after he spoke, a 61-year-old woman buried under the debris was pulled out alive and taken to a local hospital, said Michael Reznik, the public safety director for the city said.

Search and rescue crews continued to search for victims into the night.

"We do not know how many people were actually in the store at that time and so active search and rescue continues," the mayor said.

"We're taking away the debris. We still have an area to be examined, and we are hopeful that we have actually gotten out everyone who was in the building, but at this moment, we do not know for sure."

Dogs have aided in the effort, which is expected to last at least into Thursday, Fire Commissioner Lloyd Ayers told reporters.

He described the operation as tedious.

Of the 13 people injured and taken to area hospitals, five had been released as of Wednesday afternoon.

The building collapsed onto the Salvation Army Thrift Store next door with an ominous rumble, witnesses said.

"You felt it shake," Jordan McLaughlin told CNN affiliate KYW. "There was people that actually fell over. People started screaming, they ran across the street. There was people inside the building, you heard them scream."

He said he helped two people out of the building. Other bystanders, including construction workers, helped four or five others out in the moments after the collapse.

Patrick Glynn said he and others moved rocks and debris to get at people stuck in the rubble.

"I knew that was going to collapse some time soon, and it did today," he told CNN affiliate WPVI.

"For weeks they've been standing on the edge, knocking bricks off, pieces of, you could just see it was ready to go at any time. I knew it was going to happen. I seen it. I said it 10 times. Ask these guys. Every day, I said, 'It's gonna collapse, it's gonna collapse.'"

Another witness, Ari Barker, said he was in his office across the street when he heard "a rumbling, a very unusual sound." He rushed to the window to see a plume of dust rising from the debris.

Kate Slyman said she felt the ground rumbling as the building collapsed.

"The first thing that came to my mind was a terrorist attack," she said.

Police described the collapse as an "industrial accident." The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has been told it was an accident at a demolition site, and it has investigators on the way, spokeswoman Leni Fortson said.

There were no known violations at the site.

"No violations, no complaints that we're aware of, and all permits were valid," Nutter said.

The Salvation Army issued a statement saying it had sent a disaster response team to the site and asking that the public pray for its employees, customers and others involved in the collapse.

The collapse occurred in a heavily traveled area of the Philadelphia's Center City neighborhood. The nearby Mutter Museum is a popular tourist destination that houses medical oddities.

The museum said on Facebook that it would be closed until further notice. While its building was undamaged, the museum said police were using its facilities as a staging area for the rescue operation.

  • Update: 5 Workers Arrested During Banquete Game Room Bust

    Update: 5 Workers Arrested During Banquete Game Room Bust

    Saturday, April 19 2014 11:00 PM EDT2014-04-20 03:00:15 GMT
    Another game room bust, this one happening in Banquete late Friday night. The Nueces County Sheriff's Office raided two game rooms and both of them were packed with players. The sheriff's office had under cover officers look into two game rooms, one in Banquete and the other just south of Robstown. Not only is it alleged that the game room paying out money, but the game room in Banquete was also a fire trap since there was only one way in and one way out. The Banquete game room had been ...More >>
    Another game room bust, this one happening in Banquete late Friday night. The Nueces County Sheriff's Office raided two game rooms and both of them were packed with players. The sheriff's office had under cover officers look into two game rooms, one in Banquete and the other just south of Robstown. Not only is it alleged that the game room paying out money, but the game room in Banquete was also a fire trap since there was only one way in and one way out. The Banquete game room had been ...More >>
  • Residents Startled by Gun Fire

    Residents Startled by Gun Fire

    Saturday, April 19 2014 10:45 PM EDT2014-04-20 02:45:09 GMT
    Residents woke up to the sound of gun shots in one westside neighborhood Saturday morning. The incident happened just before 2:30 Saturday morning at a home near the intersection of Cortez and Baldwin Boulevard. Police later told 3 News that one man was arrested, but only for public intoxication. Police say the man put up a struggle with officers.More >>
    Residents woke up to the sound of gun shots in one westside neighborhood Saturday morning. The incident happened just before 2:30 Saturday morning at a home near the intersection of Cortez and Baldwin Boulevard. Police later told 3 News that one man was arrested, but only for public intoxication. Police say the man put up a struggle with officers.More >>
  • Car Crashes and Catches Fire

    Car Crashes and Catches Fire

    Saturday, April 19 2014 10:30 PM EDT2014-04-20 02:30:09 GMT
    A driver loses control and crashes in between two barriers under the freeway. It happened at the Greenwood turn around and SPID earlier Saturday afternoon. CCPD says that the driver was speeding when he made the turn and lost control, getting stuck between the two barriers. Police say the impact caused the car to catch fire. The driver was not injured. He was given a ticket and the car will be impounded, that's because the driver did not have insurance.More >>
    A driver loses control and crashes in between two barriers under the freeway. It happened at the Greenwood turn around and SPID earlier Saturday afternoon. CCPD says that the driver was speeding when he made the turn and lost control, getting stuck between the two barriers. Police say the impact caused the car to catch fire. The driver was not injured. He was given a ticket and the car will be impounded, that's because the driver did not have insurance.More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KIII. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.