A girl aged three was found alive after being trapped for more than 14 hours under the rubble of four collapsed residential buildings in eastern China as the death toll rose to 22, mainland media reports
Up to Tuesday morning a total of 28 people had been rescued – including the child – after the five-storey, poorly constructed buildings collapsed shortly before dawn on Monday in Lucheng industrial zone in Wenzhou, Zhejiang province, China Central Television reported.
Rescue workers are still continuing to search for other residents who remain missing.
The buildings were believed to have been badly constructed by local residents in the 1970s, and were being rented out mostly to poorly paid migrant workers, Xinhua reported.
Most of the apartments had been sub-divided with partition walls into smaller rooms so that they could accommodate more people.
Persistent heavy rainfall is believed to have further weakened the buildings, China National Radio reported.
The girl, who suffered only minor injuries, was one six survivors that had suffered injuries, the report said.
She is believed to have survived because her body had been shielded from heavy debris by the body of man – believed to have been her father – who was killed when the buildings collapsed.
Rescuers found the child underneath the body of the man, who had a one-metre long, 20 centimetre-thick concrete board resting across his back, which is also believed to have protected the child from debris.
The child was taken to hospital, but found to have only slight injuries.