Scores found in Bangladesh building collapse as death toll climbs to 254 (VIDEO)



A Bangladeshi victim is carried through a hospital after a building collapse in Savar, on the outskirts of Dhaka, on April 24, 2013.


Munir uz Zaman

Forty people were found Thursday in the debris of a horrific building collapse that killed at least 254 people in Bangladesh on Wednesday, an army official told the Associated Press, but Agence-France Press said the number was later taken down to 24. 

As the national news agency Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS) reported the death toll had risen to 254, Brigadier General Mohammed Siddiqul Alam Shikder, who is handling rescue operations in the Savar area out Dhaka, told AP amazing stories of survival.

He said a group was discovered trapped in a fourth-floor room in the building late Thursday. He said 12 of them have been rescued so far, but officials fear many more are trapped in the debris. 

Several garment factories employing over 2,000 people operated out of the the large eight-story building, which was in such a state or disrepair that government agencies recorded large cracks in the walls.

Nevertheless, factory owners disregarded government orders to clear the building, ignoring warnings of imminent danger issued as late as Tuesday, said AP

The building's collapse on Wednesday marks the worst such incident in the country's history, said AFP, despite seeing frequent and often tragic similar accidents. 

Five months ago, a factory fire killed over 100 people in the capital. 

Here's AP from on the scene in Savar: