The toll from the collapse of the roof of a church on Sunday October 1 in Ciudad Madero, in the northeast of Mexico, increased on Monday to eleven dead after the death of a seriously injured personannounced the authorities.
“Unfortunately, I have just learned that another person has died. We have eleven dead,” the city’s mayor, Adrian Oseguera, told reporters at the scene of the tragedy that occurred duringa baptism attended by 62 people.
Thirteen of them are still hospitalized, including a minor in “intensive care”. Search operations, carried out with the help of rescue dogs, were suspended late Monday morning.
The accident occurred on Sunday around 2:18 p.m. local time (10:18 p.m. in Paris), probably due to structural failure, the authorities said in a press release. The Santa Cruz parish church with brick walls and tin roof, built around forty years ago, was renovated in 2010.
Mexican president offers condolences
“What the priest said was that at the time of the blessing, he heard a rod (in the roof) give way,” Roberto Chavez, civil protection coordinator for the state of Tamaulipas, told the press. “We are going through a very difficult time” said the bishop of the local diocese, José Armando Alvarez, in a video posted on social networks.
President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Monday offered his condolences to the relatives of the victims. The tragedy aroused “a lot of solidarity from the people”he said during his daily press conference.
As construction equipment begins to clear the rubble, Beatriz Morales, a housewife, says she is “shocked”. “What happens to one of us, happens to all of us, so we feel a lot of pain for the families who are going through this ordeal“, she adds to AFP.
Located on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, Ciudad Madero has just over 200,000 inhabitants. In 2017, a similar tragedy occurred in the state of Puebla when a church collapsed during a baptism following an earthquake. Eleven people from the same family diedincluding the baby who was to be baptized.