30 trapped after collapse of Cambodian hotel under construction

7-storey building in Kep, Cambodia collapsed around 4:30pm. (Twitter pic/noansereiboth)

PHNOM PENH: A seven-storey building under construction collapsed in southern Cambodia on Friday trapping dozens of workers under the rubble, police told AFP, as rescuers pulled eight injured survivors from the wreckage.

The building in coastal Kep province was meant to be a hotel but crumbled at around 4.30pm, with video circulating online showing concrete floors sandwiched together as firefighters and an excavator arrived.

“Around 30 people are believed to be trapped,” National Police spokesman Chhay Kim Khoeun told AFP, adding that law enforcement was assisting in the search.

Deadly accidents plague the kingdom’s poorly regulated building sector even as the country has enjoyed a construction boom.

In June nearly 30 people died after the collapse of a building under construction in Sihanoukville, a beach town undergoing a Chinese investment bonanza.

Last month at least three workers died and more than a dozen others were seriously injured after an under-construction dining hall at a temple collapsed in the tourist town of Siem Reap.

There are an estimated 200,000 construction workers in Cambodia, most unskilled, reliant on day wages and not protected by union rules, according to the International Labour Organisation.