At least 90 people died on Sunday in India when a colonial-era suspension bridge sank in the state of Gujarati (west), according to the latest balance.
The incident occurred in Morbiabout 200 kilometers west of the main city of Gujarati, Ahmedabad. Authorities said about 500 people were on the bridge, including women and children, when the cables holding the structure gave way, causing it to fall into the river.
According to local officials quoted by the media, people on the bridge were performing rituals as part of a religious festival.
Videos posted on social media showed the bridge swaying from the crowd moments before it collapsed.
Other footage showed people hanging from the remains of the structure in the dark and trying to swim to shore to safety.
The 233-meter suspension bridge, built in the British mandate era, had been opened this week to the public, after seven months of repair work.
The station NDTV reported that the bridge reopened despite not having a fitness certificate and that video footage from Saturday showed it swaying.
Authorities launched a rescue operation after the collapse with submarines deployed to the area to find the missing.
The first Minister Narendra Modiwho was visiting Gujaratiannounced compensation for the families of the victims and those injured in the accident.
Modi urged “urgent mobilization of teams for rescue (operations),” his office tweeted. “He has asked that the situation be closely and continuously monitored, and (that the authorities) extend all possible help to those affected.”
The government of Gujarati describes the bridge on its official website as “an engineering marvel built at the turn of the century”.
Accidents involving old and poorly maintained infrastructure, including bridges, are common in the India.
An overpass collapsed in 2016 in the middle of a busy street in the city of kolkata (this) leaving at least 26 dead. Rescue teams pulled out about a hundred people from under the huge pieces of cement and metal.
In 2011, at least 32 people were killed when a bridge packed with people attending a festival collapsed in the north-east of the country, some 30 kilometers from Dajeerling.
Less than a week later, 30 people were killed when a pedestrian bridge over a river in the northeastern state of Arunachal Pradesh Collapsed.
In 2006, the collapse of another 150-year-old bridge in the state of bihar the passage of a passenger train left at least 34 victims.
A suspension bridge collapsed in India: there are 91 dead and 100 missing