Two die in Chitral hotel collapse

15 others also injured as balcony floor gives way


Ali Murad/Shahida Pareevn August 13, 2020
A view of the hotel's third floor balcony which gave away as members of three families stood enjoying sights of the city. PHOTO: EXPRESS

CHITRAL:

Two tourists died and 15 others were injured when a balcony of a hotel in the mountainous town of Chitral in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa collapsed on Thursday.

Three families from Kasur in Punjab were on the balcony of the hotel’s third floor when the floor gave way, according to the police.

The man and a woman died in the collapse while four of the 15 injured in the incident are said to be in critical condition.

The injured were initially shifted to the District Headquarters Hospital, Chitral. However, they were later flown to Lady Reading Hospital (LRH) in Peshawar via helicopters and admitted to its emergency ward.

An LRH spokesperson said the hospital’s director, Dr Khalid Masood, was in contact with Chitral deputy commissioner.

The hospital’s director assured the deputy commissioner that the injured were being provided with the best treatment available at the medical facility.

The spokesperson added that the LRH's management was also in contact with other departments concerned.

The government has allowed the tourism industry to reopen in the country with standard operating procedures in place after almost five months in the wake of a decline in Covid-19 cases and fatalities in the country.

The province of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, which attracts thousands of local and foreign tourists, took the hardest hit of the coronavirus-induced travel restrictions when several businesses in the province were left paralysed amid the pandemic scare.

Tourists from across the country have rushed to the scenic destinations of the province as soon as the restrictions were lifted.

Last month, flash floods wreaked havoc in Chitral causing destruction in the popular tourist destination.

Chaos reigned in the Golen Gol area of Chitral on July 13 due to a glacial lake outburst flood for the second consecutive year.

A girls' madrassa in Azghor village, livestock, vehicles and sheds were swept away as the floods inundated footpaths and roads and broke bridge embankments. The Golen valley was also cut off from the rest of the areas as there was no road access.

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