School in Haiti collapses
A school in Petionville, Haiti collapsed Friday, killing more than 30 students, and injuring many more.
According to the International Herald Tribune, â€śNeighbors suspected the building was poorly rebuilt after it partially collapsed eight years ago.â€? The Charlotte Observer reported the death toll as 75 on Friday as well.
Jinny Germain, a French teacher at College La Promesse said that many people left their homes well before, out of fear that the building would give away. She also revealed that the schoolâ€™s owner then attempted to buy the families abandoned lots.
Around 500 students attended the College La Promesse, a kindergarten through high school institution; it is not clear whether all 500 students were in the school when it collapsed.
Many people suspected that recent rains were a major cause of the collapse; however, Mayor Claire Rudie Parent of Petionville told the International Herald Tribune that â€śshe suspected a structural defect caused the collapse.â€? The Tribune reported that the â€śconcrete buildingâ€™s third story was still under constructionâ€? at the time.
Haitian President Rene Preval revealed to the Charlotte Observer that â€śa previous mayor of Petionville had tried to halt the expansion of La Promesse over safety concerns but the effort faltered when a new mayor came into power in the hillside suburb of the capital.â€?
She went on to plead for â€śconsistencyâ€? between new and old administration. â€śThe next time the mayor speaks and the authorities speak, people will listen,â€? Preval said.
Yphosiane Vil, a civil protection official told the Tribune that â€śMore children were believed buried in the rubble of the concrete building, and the death toll was likely to go higher.â€?
I must have read almost 20 stories throughout the weekend as they were updated, death toll numbers increased (88 on Sunday), and new information became available. I have just now learned today (Sunday) that World News has reported that the owner of the school Fortin Augustin has been arrested and charged with voluntary manslaughter for the wreckage.