Vol. 5 Num 630 Tue. March 07, 2006  

Building Collapse
Probe body finds structural flaws

The Phoenix building, which collapsed on February 25 killing 21 and injuring over 50 people, had serious structural flaws, said an inquiry report compiled by the joint inquiry team comprising officials of Rajuk, and the Ministry of Housing and Public Works.

The building at Tejgaon in the capital was constructed after filling up a pond and the owners did not follow proper technical measures while taking up the construction on a wetland. Moreover, the owners recently took up extensive modification works in the building to convert it from a garment factory into a hospital without proper planning. In the process of the modification works, several columns were either knocked down or tampered with, officials of the inquiry committee said.

The members of the inquiry team have blamed the owners and technical partners of the construction site for the collapse. Sources in the inquiry team said they could not trace any plan of the building and therefore it was not possible to ascertain whether the building plan was faulty or not. They said only after interrogating the owners and the professionals involved, more information on the cause of the collapse will emerge.

The report has been submitted to the housing and public works ministry.