At Least 45 People Killed After Store In Latvia Collapses

At least 45 people are dead and dozens more injured after a supermarket collapsed in the Latvian capital of Riga.

At Least 45 People Killed After Store In Latvia Collapses
RTE News

Rescue workers in Latvia are racing to find survivors after a supermarket in the country's capital collapsed, killing at least 45 people.  

This supermarket in Riga, Latvia collapsed Thursday evening, killing at least 45 people and injuring dozens more. Emergency workers are still unsure how many more people may still be trapped beneath the rubble. (Via CNN)

Among the dead are three fire fighters who were involved in the rescue effort. 

Fire fighters bravely charged in to rescue shoppers after the roof of the supermarket initially collapsed. But the building was still unstable, and a secondary collapsed occurred while emergency workers were sifting through debris. (Via RT / RuptlyTV)

The New York Times explains the collapse " ... happened at a Maxima supermarket in a residential neighborhood, west of the Daugava River in Riga, which is the biggest city in the Baltics and its biggest seaport." (Via Google Maps)

The death toll makes it deadliest accident in the country since it won independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. It's still unclear what caused the supermarket to collapse — the building was only two years old.  

But the BBC says local authorities are pointing to the roof garden that was still under construction when the supermarket gave way : " ... tons and tons of soil weighed down it seems by heavy rain." 

Officials told the press there is a possibility the roof garden violated Latvian construction code. The death toll may rise as the search and rescue effort for possible survivors is still ongoing.