Imagine being rendered homeless with only the clothes on your back overnight. This is the tragic situation a group of Gwardamanġa residents found themselves in after their block of apartments caved in last night.
“My brother and his wife are homeless and all their possessions, including their wedding rings, our parents’ memorable things, precious possessions, even gold and money have been buried,” a sister of one of the residents told Lovin Malta. “They managed to grab the dog, but had to leave other pets inside.”
Although the cause of the accident has not yet been officially established, fingers are being pointed squarely at the construction site next door
The resident’s sister said that the contractor had been informed many times that he was damaging the neighbouring block of apartments, most recently yesterday afternoon.
“At night, my brother sensed something was wrong,” she said. “It was like a movie scene; my brother could see the cracks widening, there was dust everywhere and they could hardly see anything. They ran outside and everything collapsed as soon as they reached the pavement. I count it as a miracle [that they’re still alive].”
“This is becoming a habit. Rude workers, Health and Safety giving the go-ahead… I could have ended up without my brother.”
Meanwhile, the father of one of the residents said he is thankful to the Holy Mary that his daughter and her husband are still alive.
“The construction next door is being carried out carelessly… [my daughter and her husband] could see the dust falling down and they ran down to wake up everyone up and everyone ran out into the street in their pyjamas.”
“Shortly afterwards, blocks started falling down. My daughter saved them all, and now she’s crying in front of me because all her possessions have been taken away from her.”
The Malta Independent obtained a recording of a resident tearfully telling his son that his apartment had fallen down and the son insulting the architect of the construction site next door.
Transport Malta’s Theory Test Centre, which is located right next to the building, also suffered extensive damage, and people who turned up for their tests today were told to await further instructions.
Cover photo: Gwardamangia residents watch the scenes unfold last night (Screenshots from a TVM video)