VIDEO: One victim rescued, many hurt in crane collapse
Two cranes installing a portion of the Juliana Bridge in Alphen aan den Rijn toppled over Monday afternoon, injuring as many as 20 people. The regional safety office initially suggested about two dozen were hurt, but said that number could actually be lower.
It is not clear how many people were trapped under the rubble, Deputy Mayor Kees van Velzen said at a press conference. “The victims have the highest priority,” van Velzen said. One person fleeing a store was trapped by the wreckage, and successfully rescued shortly after the accident. A dog was killed at the scene.
The country’s Urban Search and Rescue Team mobilized, and conducted searches of two buildings finding no victims. Rescuers had difficulty getting into one of the buildings, which could collapse, broadcaster NOS reported.
The accident crushed four homes and two shops on Hooftstraat in the Zuid-Holland city. The USAR sent two teams of rescuers and five specially-trained dogs to the scene.
The dogs did not catch the scent of any trapped survivors, a spokesperson for the team said during a televised interview. However, the dogs are not trained to find deceased victims.
Alphen aan den Rijn mayor Liesbeth Spies, is cutting her vacation short and returning to the city Monday night.
Neighbourhood buildings were evacuated for a gas leak investigation. The gas leak is a possible result of the structural damage.