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Safety fears at 2nd complex

RESIDENTS of a second Minhang District apartment complex are waiting for government officials to reassure them that their homes are safe after another excavation-related construction mishap caused a brief evacuation of more than 100 families.

Cracks appeared recently on a road, the exterior of an apartment building and other structures at the South City community, located about 1 kilometer from the Lotus Riverside complex, where an apartment building toppled last Saturday.

The faults at South City occurred after construction began recently on an underground garage for a hotel nearby, residents said.

At around 10pm on Thursday, property management staff asked 112 families in four 14-story apartment buildings on Humin Road to evacuate because a collapse at the excavation site might endanger their buildings.

Most residents took their belongings to the nearby Longxi Elementary School, which served as a temporary shelter. A police cordon was removed about an hour later, and the residents were allowed to return home. Some, however, did not go back, fearing there still might be safety problems.

The mishap involved a large amount of earth that had been dug from the site of the underground garage and piled more than three meters deep alongside. Some of it collapsed back into the pit during a storm on Thursday night.

The nearest residential complex was only 15 meters away. A wall tilted 60 degrees, and a fence was broken.

An hour later, a government task force told residents that a preliminary inspection showed their homes were not in danger.

Minhang District's planning bureau said the collapse was caused by a drainage pipe that burst during the storm. Repairs to the pipe will take about two days.

An inspection team will monitor the buildings over the next three days to make sure they are safe, a district government official said.


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