Sri Lanka update: Death toll rises to 19 as rubbish dump collapse destroys over 100 homes
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Sri Lanka update: Death toll rises to 19 as rubbish dump collapse destroys over 100 homes

8 MORE people have died since a massive rubbish dump collapsed on homes situated at the edge of it in Colombo, an increase from 11 on Saturday night.

“The main obstacle is we don’t have a clear idea of how many people are buried as nobody is claiming that their relatives are missing, unlike on previous occasions,” Ranasinghe told Reuters.

“We don’t have any deadline and we will continue until we clear everything.”

BBC reports that four children aged between 11 and 15 were killed, while 21 people have been brought to the hospital for injuries.

The dump towered 300-feet above residents around it, and 145 homes have been destroyed, according to an AFP report. Police said the homes were mostly shacks, which were inevitably smashed when the huge dump shifted due to floods and a fire on Friday.

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Military officers operate an excavator during a rescue mission after a garbage dump collapsed and buried dozens of houses in Colombo. Pic: Reuters

625 people have been displaced and are being given temporary shelter at a nearby school while authorities search for alternative accommodation for them.

Police added that the death toll would have been much higher if people had not been evacuated earlier in the day because of the heavy rain.

Residents in the area have been demanding the removal of the dump saying it was causing health issues. 800 tons of rubbish was being added to the dump on a daily basis before this collapse. The government had planned to remove it soon under an infrastructure plan.

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Members of the military work during a rescue mission after a garbage dump collapsed and buried dozens of houses in Colombo. Pic: Reuters

Additional reporting by Reuters

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