Part of the Siji Kaiyuan Hotel collapsed in the Chinese coastal city of Suzhou on Monday afternoon. Eight people were killed. Other nine were missing. The Ministry of Emergency Management sent a team to help with the rescue work. The workers in the city of Suzhou searched through the night, using rescue dogs, cranes, ladders and metal cutters. More than 600 people including earthquake rescue teams and 120 vehicles were mobilized for the operation, the city government said. Siji Kaiyuan Hotel is a budget hotel that opened in 2018 and had 54 guest rooms. The part that collapsed and had been reduced to girders and rubble was three storeys tall. At least 23 people were trapped when then hotel collapsed.
The cause of the collapse is under investigation. A preliminary analysis of the cause points to an unauthorized change in the building’s structure, state news agency Xinhua reported. The hotel was undergoing construction work before it collapsed. Building collapses in China have often been attributed to poor construction work. The collapse of a quarantine hotel in southern China’s Quanzhou city last March killed 29 people. Suzhou, a city of more than 12 million people roughly 100 kilometres (60 miles) west of Shanghai, is a popular destination for tourists drawn to its canals and centuries-old gardens.