It was a major setback to Cambodia when one of its upcoming hotels crashed to the ground. It was a seven-storey building being constructed in the seaside town of Kep. Rescue teams used all possible means like excavators, drills and power saws to remove the concrete rubble in order to locate trapped people and the death toll rose to 36. Prime Minister Hun Sen finally announced an end of the rescue operation because hopes of finding any further survivors was negligible. Provincial authorities indicated the breakdown of the casualty figures. There were at least 13 women and 6 children among the dead and it was possible to rescue 23 survivors.

The Guardian says the Prime Minister indicated that authorities have detained owners who hired the construction crew. They could face charges and added that there would be no action taken on any official. He justified his stand and said – “Building collapses don’t only happen in Cambodia. They happen elsewhere ... including in the United States.”

Cambodia is undergoing a construction boom

It seems the building collapsed when the process of pouring concrete was on in the upper level. The provincial authorities said a committee would carry out investigation to establish the reason of the tragedy.

Cambodia is right now witnessing a construction boom. The result is an increase in the number of hotels, high-rises and casinos, which are profitable investments.

The Guardian explains most of the construction work is labor intensive.

On a rough estimate, there could be nearly 200,000 of them at any given time. They are usually unskilled, rely on daily wages and do not have any protection of unions. The International Labor Organization reveals this. These workers convert the construction sites into their temporary homes. Incidentally, in June another similar collapse killed 28 people.

It was in Sihanoukville, a beach town where there is plenty of Chinese investment. Cambodia wants to make it the “New Macau,” a Travel destination to attract tourists.

The tragedy should be a wakeup call

According to Al Jazeera, a guesthouse under construction in Cambodia collapsed and killed 36 persons. They were workers who lived in the premises and got trapped beneath the rubble. It was a seven-storey concrete building coming up in the coastal town of Kep, located about 100 miles from the capital Phnom Penh. This is the latest such incident in the country's booming construction industry. It seems there was approval of five floors for the building but work was going on to build two additional floors.

That could be a reason. Collapses are not new in the country because last month, at least three workers died and more than a dozen others suffered serious injuries when an under-construction dining hall at a temple collapsed. It happened in the tourist town of Siem Reap.