11 July 2024

SHANGHAI (REUTERS) – A five-storey hotel being used for coronavirus quarantine collapsed in the south-east Chinese port city of Quanzhou on Saturd trapping about 70 people, state media said.

A video stream posted by the government-backed Beijing News site showed rescue workers in orange overalls clambering over the rubble of the Quanzhou Xinjia Hotel and carrying people towards ambulances.

The hotel collapsed at about 7.30pm and 34 people were rescued in the following two hours, the Quanzhou municipality said on its website.

“I was at a gas station and heard a loud noise. I looked up and the whole building collapsed. Dust was everywhere, and glass fragments were flying around,” a witness said in a video posted on the Miaopai streaming app.

“I was so terrified that my hands and legs were shivering.”

A woman named only by her surname, Chen, told the Beijing News website that relatives including her sister had been under quarantine at the hotel as prescribed by local regulations after returning from Hubei province, where the coronavirus emerged.

She said they had been scheduled to leave soon after completing their 14 days of isolation.