NewsEngineers inspect Chinese skyscraper after shaking triggers panic

Engineers inspect Chinese skyscraper after shaking triggers panic

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Beijing, China: Engineers inspected a skyscraper in southern China on Wednesday, a day after it shook violently, causing public concern and prompting online speculation that bad construction was to blame.

In the early afternoon of Tuesday, the 300-meter (1,000-foot) SEG Plaza in Shenzhen, near Hong Kong, began wobbling, pushing people inside and on the streets below to leave.

Officials soon ruled out an earthquake as the cause of the tremors in the Futian neighborhood of the IT capital.

Engineers monitoring the structure since Tuesday night had identified no vibrations larger than the building code limit for skyscrapers, officials said late Wednesday.

Experts found “no safety abnormalities in the main structure and surrounding environment of the building,” the local government said in a statement.

According to official media, the building had ceased shaking by the time people were evacuated, and the plaza remained closed.

Building collapses are common in China, where low construction regulations and rapid urbanization have resulted in buildings being erected in a hurry in recent decades.

Poor building standards are frequently linked to corruption among local officials, as seen by the recent collapse of a quarantined hotel in southern China.

The SEG Plaza in Shenzhen was reportedly “shaking” on Tuesday afternoon, according to the Chinese city’s Emergency Management Bureau on Weibo. There have been no reports of an earthquake around the building, which – at 356 metres tall – is the 72nd tallest in the world. pic.twitter.com/dcO7tHWJUZ

— Hong Kong Free Press HKFP (@hkfp) May 18, 2021

 

The SEG Plaza in Shenzhen was reportedly “shaking” on Tuesday afternoon, according to the Chinese city’s Emergency Management Bureau on Weibo. There have been no reports of an earthquake around the building, which – at 356 metres tall – is the 72nd tallest in the world. pic.twitter.com/dcO7tHWJUZ

— Hong Kong Free Press HKFP (@hkfp) May 18, 2021

The US Consulate in nearby Guangzhou cautioned citizens to avoid the area surrounding the skyscraper on Wednesday, citing “inadequate information to determine the safety hazards,” a day after the skyscraper was evacuated.

Local media broadcasted video footage. By Wednesday, Jimu News appeared to show some sellers returning to the lower floors of the building to pick up items from the electronics mall, while the upper stories remained closed off and shoppers were barred from entering.

Following Tuesday’s tragedy, social media erupted, with hashtags relating to the tremors generating more than 780 million views and hundreds of thousands of comments on the Twitter-like Weibo platform, with many people concerned about construction standards.

“Shenzhen should not use this shaking building again. It’s fit for demolition,” wrote one.

“In today’s cities, there’s no guarantee of the quality of these skyscrapers,” added another.

The tower, which was completed in 2000, is located in Shenzhen’s core business district and houses a big electronics market as well as other offices. Shenzhen is a huge metropolis with a population of more than 13 million people.

Shenzhen Electronics Group, a semiconductor and electronics firm with offices in the complex, is named after the structure.

According to the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat skyscraper database, it is Shenzhen’s 18th highest structure.

Last year, Chinese officials barred the construction of skyscrapers taller than 500 meters, adding to existing height limitations in areas such as Beijing.

COVER IMAGE COURTESY OF GIORNALE RADIO VIA TWITTER

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