Rescue teams search for 5 police officers under collapsed building

Egyptian rescue teams are looking for five civil defense officers trapped under the rubble of a building that collapsed east of Cairo after a store containing chemical substances exploded late Wednesday.

A security source said the 13-story building, located in the Madinet al-Salam area, had collapsed on the officers while they were attempting to extinguish a fire that broke out in the building’s basement.

The officers trapped under the rubble include two police colonels, state news agency MENA cited an official as saying.

Rescue teams extracted the bodies of two dead policemen from the rubble, the security source told Al-Masry Al-Youm. The building collapsed when barrels filled with chemical substances, exploded.

More than six policemen were injured, added the source. The explosion did not cause any civilian casualties, as the building–still under construction–was empty of workers and residents at the time.

An eyewitness reported that rescue teams were having difficulty rescuing people trapped underneath enormous concrete blocks.

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