Demolition Of Concrete Walls Begins In Takatsuki

Demolition of concrete walls begins in Takatsuki

Work to remove unsafe concrete-block walls at schools has begun in a city in Osaka, western Japan, after the collapse of such a wall killed a 9-year-old girl.

A massive earthquake on Monday of last week caused the collapse of a wall separating a school's swimming pool and a public road in Takatsuki City. The falling wall crushed the girl as she was on her way to school.

City officials have admitted that the 3.5-meter-high wall exceeded height safety standards and was illegal.

Emergency inspections have confirmed the existence of substandard concrete walls at 15 elementary and junior high schools in the city.

On Monday, workers were seen using power tools to demolish a wall at a junior high school.

The wall is hundreds of meters long and lacks reinforcement between its concrete blocks and foundation.

A woman says she is relieved that removal work has started, as children at a nearby nursery school pass by on the road in front of the wall.

City officials say they hope to have all the substandard walls demolished within 3 weeks.