NEW DELHI -- A wing of a public hospital in Bhopal, India, collapsed on Friday afternoon, seriously injuring at least four people and leaving more than a dozen trapped, according to Indian authorities.
The two-story Kasturba Gandhi Hospital was evacuated after the collapse, which took place around 5 p.m.
S. Singh, a Bhopal police subinspector, said by telephone that two cranes and at least four bulldozers were being rushed to the area.
The scene, as shown on Indian TV news channels, was chaotic, with men climbing over giant slabs of concrete trying to find survivors. Some of the men swung large hammers to try to break through the roof of the collapsed wing.
Vijay Kumar, a hospital clerk, said in a telephone interview that construction crews had been making repairs in the hospital for the past month, although they were not at work on Friday. The wing of the hospital that collapsed had 18 to 20 patients, of which 5 or 6 had been rescued as of Friday evening, Mr. Kumar said.
The hospital collapse occurred while rescue efforts were still under way at a collapsed eight-story building near Dhaka, Bangladesh, where the death toll was at nearly 300 and rising. Earlier this month, a building near Mumbai collapsed, killing 72. Shoddy construction standards, a lack of government inspections, huge slum populations and rapid urbanization are blamed for such collapses.
Hari Kumar and Sruthi Gottipati contributed reporting.world
This article originally appeared in The New York Times.