At least five workers were killed while three others were injured after a 50-foot tall section of scaffolding on a road project collapsed in central Mexico. The incident reportedly occurred in the state of Hidalgo on Saturday.
According to officials on Sunday, the workers were pouring cement into a huge form on what appeared to be a highway retaining wall, when the form and the scaffolding gave way. The workers plunged to their deaths in a tangle of metal and wet cement.
Mexico’s Transportation Department said that the accident occurred in Hidalgo, where all personnel on the site have been pulled from the rubble. The structure was being built by a private contractor, and investigations were underway into the cause of the collapse.
Mexico has received criticism over insufficient work site safety. It remains one of the world’s most dangerous places to work in.
The incident comes after a devastating church roof collapse in the northern part of the country, which killed at least 11 people and injured over 60 others during a Sunday mass.
Searchers crawled under the roof slabs and officials brought in dogs to help search for possible survivors. The Tamaulipas state police said about 100 people were in the church at the time of the collapse.
Bishop José Armando Alvarez of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Tampico said the roof caved in while parishioners were receiving communion at the Santa Cruz church in the Gulf coast city of Ciudad Madero, next to the port city of Tampico.
The state security spokesperson’s office later said that the collapse was likely being caused by “a structural failure”. Photos published by local media showed what appeared to be a concrete and brick structure, with parts of the roof fallen almost to the ground. Security camera footage from about a block away showed the unusual, gabled roof simply collapsed downward.
(with AP inputs)