March 08, 2020 05:51:26
As coronavirus continues to spread to new countries, about 70 people have been trapped after a five-storey hotel used for coronavirus quarantine collapsed in the Chinese city of Quanzhou.
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Dozens trapped in collapsed quarantine hotel in China
About 70 people have been trapped after a five-storey hotel used for coronavirus quarantine collapsed in the Chinese city of Quanzhou in Fujian Province.
Video posted online showed orange-clad rescue workers clambering over mounds of rubble.
The building collapsed at about 7:30pm local time and 38 people were rescued in the following two hours, the Quanzhou authorities said.
The municipality said 36 emergency rescue vehicles such as cranes and excavators, 67 firefighting vehicles, 15 ambulances, and more than 700 firefighters, medical and other rescue workers were at the scene as the operation stretched into the night.
There were no immediate reports of deaths.
The official People’s Daily said the hotel had opened in June 2018 with 80 rooms and was being used to quarantine people during the coronavirus outbreak.
The Fujian provincial government said that as of Friday, the province had 296 cases of coronavirus and 10,819 people had been placed under observation after being classified as suspected close contacts.
No reason was given for the collapse of the hotel.
Pope to deliver prayer via video amid coronavirus outbreak
Pope Francis will deliver his next two public blessings via video to prevent crowds from gathering as a precaution against the spread of the coronavirus.
The Vatican said that on Sunday he would not address crowds from a window overlooking St Peter’s Square and would not hold his general audience there either on Wednesday.
They will be held without general public participation from inside the Vatican.
The 83-year-old Pope cancelled a Lent retreat for the first time in his papacy, but the Vatican has said he is suffering only from a cold that is “without symptoms related to other pathologies”.
Tens of thousands of people gather in the square every Sunday and thousands of others attend his weekly general audience, which is held either outdoors in the square or in a large audience hall inside the Vatican, depending on the weather.
A Vatican employee tested positive for coronavirus on Friday, the first case in the tiny city-state that is surrounded by Rome.
Death tolls and infection cases rise in Europe
The death toll from Italy’s coronavirus outbreak has risen by 36 to 233 officials said, with the official number of cases in the country now at 5,883 cases from 4,636 cases on Friday.
France’s Health Ministry said on Saturday that two more people had died from the coronavirus, bringing the total death toll to 11 people.
One of the two fatalities was confirmed in the northern part of France, the other in Normandy, the ministry said in a statement.
France has now 716 confirmed cases of coronavirus, an increase of 103 compared with a day earlier, the ministry said.
Meanwhile Germany’s number of infection cases has jumped to 684 on Saturday morning, an increase of 45 over Friday night according to the country’s public health agency.
The cases are concentrated in the west and south of the country, with 346 in the state of North Rhine Westphalia and over 100 each in the southern states of Bavaria and Baden-Wuerttemberg, where the country’s initial cases were registered.
The official total of confirmed coronavirus cases in the Netherlands rose by 60 on Saturday to 188, health officials said.
The number of confirmed cases in the United Kingdom has increased to 206, a rise of 43.
12-year-old girl first case in Malta
Malta has confirmed its first coronavirus case, a 12-year-old girl of Italian origin who lives in the Mediterranean island nation with her family.
Health Minister Chris Fearne said the girl and her family had visited northern Italy in late February and early March, returning to Malta via Rome.
The family self-quarantined as instructed but the girl started to experience symptoms.
She was tested on Friday and results came back positive on Saturday morning.
The girl is being held in an isolated section of Malta’s main public hospital, together with her sister and parents.
What the experts are saying about coronavirus: