Rescue workers in Mumbai searched for up to 20 people feared trapped in a six-story building that collapsed early Thursday, following two days of torrential rain in India’s commercial hub.
Nine people had been confirmed dead, a municipal authority official said, while rescuers estimated more than 16 had been injured and taken to hospital.
“Rescue operations are already underway. We have sent 12 fire brigade vehicles to the spot. Ambulances are also ready to take the victims to the hospital,” a fire control room official said.
The collapse is the second in Mumbai in a little over a month. In July, 17 people were killed when a four-story building crumbled after undergoing suspected unauthorized renovations.
Police had yet to determine what caused the collapse Thursday, which was again testing the city’s rescue operations after 14 people were killed by floods from heavy monsoon rains earlier in the week.
A police official told Reuters nine families were living in the building, which is in Mumbai’s Dongri neighborhood, an area full of narrow streets with closely packed buildings, some nearly a century old.
Monsoons have flooded India’s commercial capital this week and forecasters said more heavy rain was possible in the region Thursday before easing Friday.
India’s neighbors have also been hit by the monsoon season, which began in June and has affected more than 40 million people.
Karachi, Pakistan, saw heavy rain Thursday and storms were expected across the country for several days.
Bangladesh and Nepal have also experienced severe flooding that forced hundreds of thousands of people from their homes.