A second building has collapsed in Casablanca because of the heavy rainfall that the city has witnessed for the past few days.
The incident occurred on Friday morning, January 8, at Derb Moulay Cherif in the Hay Mohammadi district in northern Casablanca.
The collapsed building was a three-story house. It collapsed at approximately 7 a.m. with several residents still inside.
According to initial reports, civil protection officers were able to rescue two residents and retrieve them from under the debris. Meanwhile, a search operation is ongoing to find other people believed to be trapped under the collapsed building.
There have been no further updates about the rescue mission in the past few hours.
Rachid Jkini, president of the Hay Mohammadi district, did not assume responsibility for the incident, instead he implicitly blamed the residents themselves. He told the press that local authorities had notified residents that the building might collapse and requested they vacate the building.
Evacuation, however, can be complicated, especially when residents are poor and cannot easily find a budget-friendly place to live.
A similar incident occurred in August 2020, killing one person. When residents were asked about the reason they did not vacate the building despite warnings from authorities, they said they had no money to rent elsewhere.
“We asked the landlord to help us financially while the building gets fixed, but he shut his phone and we were not able to reach him,” one of the residents told the press.
The new incident that shook Casablanca on Friday morning occurred less than one day after another building collapsed in the city’s old Medina. The collapsed building in the city’s Medina killed one person and injured four others.
The tragic events happened as Casablanca is witnessing a likely-unprecedented situation. Several neighborhoods around the city have experienced major floods that caused serious damage to property. Now, with buildings collapsing under the intense downpour, heavy rains are threatening human lives as well.