2 Dead, 20 Trapped in Tel Aviv Parking Garage Collapse

A Tel Aviv parking garage collapsed Monday, killing at least two people and trapping about 20 others, officials said.

Hours after the collapse, five people remained trapped in the debris, said the Israel Defense Forces, which are leading the rescue effort.

Israeli members of the Magen David Adom rescue service wait next to stretchers after an underground car park collapsed at a construction site on September 5, 2016 in the Ramat Hahayal neighbourhood in the coastal city of Tel Aviv. (Credit: Gil Cohen-Magen/AFP/Getty Images)

Israeli members of the Magen David Adom rescue service wait next to stretchers after an underground car park collapsed at a construction site on September 5, 2016 in the Ramat Hahayal neighbourhood in the coastal city of Tel Aviv.
(Credit: Gil Cohen-Magen/AFP/Getty Images)

“The ongoing effort consists of over 300 soldiers from the Search and Rescue battalion and the Canine Special Forces Unit,” IDF said in a statement.

Witness Sraya Listenberg said the implosion was so intense, it felt like an earthquake.

“Everything fell down in one second,” he said.

The four-story, underground parking garage was still under construction when it collapsed in a high-tech area of northern Tel Aviv. The upper three floors imploded; the lowest floor is believed to be about 50 feet underground.

As rescue teams tried to find trapped construction workers, authorities feared another collapse of the incomplete, unstable structure.

The cause of the collapse remains unclear.

Listenberg said the disaster could have been more tragic. The garage collapsed during a lunch hour, when some construction workers were eating outside.

“They had lots of luck,” Listenberg said.