Published: Sun, April 30, 2017
Health Care | By Jan Bell

Bengal jetty collapse toll rises to 13

Bengal jetty collapse toll rises to 13

WITH THE recovery of seven more bodies from Hooghly River on Friday and three on Thursday, the toll in the jetty collapse incident in Bhadreswar rose to 13.

Witnesses said the old and poorly-maintained structure gave way when it was hit by the waves. Reportedly, the temporary bridge at the jetty was very weak and it broke down as more people stood on it during the day.

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After the accident, locals jumped into the river and used small boats to rescue the people who fell into the water.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee announced an ex-gratia of Rs 1 lakh to the next of kin of the dead and Rs 25,000 for the injured.

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The incident took place on Wednesday after a portion of a jetty made of wood and bamboo collapsed in high tide.

The jetty was located in Bhadreswar of Hooghly district, about 41 km north of Kolkata, the capital city of West Bengal. Nor did it provide inflated auto tubes - the standard and cheaper alternative to life belts in jetties across India - in adequate numbers for use during accidents like the one on Wednesday. People at the spot claimed that there was a stampede but the state government attributed the deaths to "heart attack". Thirteen people are being treated at Chandananagar subdivisional hospital, said police.

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