China building collapse: Woman pulled alive from rubble after six days in Changsha

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Authorities in China have rescued a woman who survived for six days in the rubble of a building that collapsed last week in Hunan.

The woman was rescued shortly after midnight on Thursday, about 132 hours after the rear of the six-story building suddenly caved in on 29 April, China’s official Xinhua News Agency reported.

While the woman has not been identified, she is the tenth survivor of the building collapse in Changsha city, which killed five people and injured dozens of others.

The six-storey building partially collapsed with 23 people inside, state broadcaster CCTV reported.

On Thursday, rescue teams pulled out the woman who was said to have been communicating with rescuers on how to pull her out safely.

The search included the use of dogs, hand tools, drones and electronic life detectors to find survivors.

The rescue comes a day after a 21-year-old woman was found on Wednesday who had remained trapped in the rubble for 88 hours.

“The woman was in good physical and mental condition when she was rescued,” Wen Peng, the commander of the rescue team, was quoted as saying by the state-run Global Times.

He added that the woman’s excellent survival ability was the key to eventually finding her after exceeding the “golden 72 hours for rescue”.

"I did not knock when I heard the noise outside, but I knocked regularly when I felt that the rescuers were close or it was quiet outside and I soon got a response," the woman was quoted as saying after her rescue.

The operator of the collapsed residential building along with 10 others have been arrested by the police, reported the People’s Daily on Wednesday.

Authorities under the Ministry of Public Security have also deployed local public security bodies to carry out a probe into the incident and identify potential safety hazards to prevent such incidents happening again.

The building contained a restaurant, a coffee shop, a hotel and several apartments, preliminary investigations revealed, according to a report by CCTV.

Earlier this week president Xi Jinping issued instructions to rescue the victims “at all costs”.

Mr Xi said that, following an increase in the number of self-built building collapses in recent years, there need to be better checks on such structures to find any hidden dangers that need to be fixed, according to state-run news agency Xinhua.

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