Three arrested, 8 died following residential building collapse in Batumi
Three arrested after the collapse of a residential building in Batumi
Update at 14.00
Rescuers have discovered a body of a woman and a child in the rubble, the first victim to be rescued – 36-year-old woman, died in the hospital, bringing the death toll to eight. The search party continues, rescuers are looking for two more people.
Two children and four adults were killed when an entrance of a six-story residential building in the seaside Batumi, Georgia, collapsed on the morning of October 8. Rescuers managed to get two people out alive, they are in hospitals. Presumably, three more people remain under the rubble, work has been going on continuously for almost a day.
According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, three people were arrested on charges of gross violation of security while carrying out repairs in one of the apartments. It is assumed that it was these works that could cause the building to collapse. A case was initiated against them under Article 187 of the Criminal Code of Georgia, which provides for a penalty of imprisonment for a term of 2 to 10 years.
The local newspaper Batumelebi writes that on October 4, 2021, citizen Zaur Budatov submitted an application to the state service with a request to register an association into a single unit of his apartment and basement in the entrance that collapsed on the morning of October 8. These are houses at 26 Maiskaya Street, at the intersection of Memed Abashidze and Kldiashvili Streets.
The registration process was suspended because Budatov did not provide the necessary documents, including the written consent of all residents of the house.
The Batumi mayor’s office officially announced that no building permit or large-scale renovation work had been issued in this building.
But neighbors say that at this time, repair work was already underway in these premises. An anonymous source told Batumelebi that during these works the basement was significantly enlarged. A large amount of earth has been removed from it, and one or more of its supporting structures are believed to have been removed.