At around 5:30am on June 27, an unoccupied building still under construction at Lianhuanan Road in the Minhang district of Shanghai city toppled over. One worker was killed. According to information, a 70 meter section of the flood prevention wall in nearby Dianpu River and that may have something to do with this building collapse.
But the high-resolution photos are really amazing.
Improper construction methods are believed to be the reason of last Saturday's building collapse in Shanghai, according to a report from the investigation team. The investigation team's report said that workers dug an underground garage on one side of the building while on the other side earth was heaped up to 10 meters high, which was apparently an error in construction, according to a report on eastday.com, Shanghai's official news website. "Any construction company with common sense would not make such a mistake," said an expert from the investigation team.
Earlier this week, there were also reports saying that cracks on the flood-prevention wall near the building, as well as the special geological condition in the water bank area, may be part of the reason for the collapse. "These factors are not the basic reason of this accident," said the expert.
Nine people linked to the building collapse, including the real estate developer, contractor and the supervisor for the project, have been put "under appropriate control", said the official Xinhua News Agency Sunday evening.
(SCMP) Firm's ignorance led to toppling of Shanghai building, report says By Will Clem and Lillian Zhang. July 4, 2009.
An official investigation into the collapse of an unfinished building in Shanghai has said that the accident was due to the construction company's "ignorance", rather than flaws in the design or building materials. However, the report stopped short of apportioning blame, and has been criticised for failing to address key issues.
The report said the collapse was caused by earth, excavated to make a 4.6-metre deep pit for an underground car park alongside the building, being piled to depths of up to 10 metres on the other side of the structure. The weight of the pile created a "pressure differential" which led to a shift in the soil structure, eventually weakening the foundations and causing them to fail. This situation "may" have been aggravated by several days of heavy rain leading up to the collapse, but investigators would not say whether this was a crucial factor. The report said the construction company - Shanghai Zhongxin Construction - "did not consider clearly" that the earth pile could have such a devastating effect.
Investigators stopped short of saying whether the company's errors were negligent or easily avoidable. However, they stressed that the building's foundations and construction materials all complied with the city's building regulations.
Huang Rong , director of the Shanghai Urban Construction and Communications Council, said inspections had shown that none of the remaining 10 apartment blocks was in immediate danger. "The surrounding buildings are now stable," he said. "The safety inspection of these homes will be the second phase of our professional team's work."
Jiang Huancheng , an architect and a lead investigator for the report, said it had been an "enormous shock" to see the site for the first time. "In my 46 years in the industry, I have never seen or heard of this," he said. "To put it simply this was ignorance leading to rashness. We need to take this accident as an important lesson ... and ensure that it does not happen again."
Several days before the release of the report, Wu Hang , Mr Jiang's assistant, accused the construction company of incompetence and lacking "common sense". Mr Wu said the investigation had found there had been no structures to support the walls of the car park pit, and this had been a key factor contributing to the accident.
(1) An underground garage was being dug on the south side, to a depth of 4.6 meters
(2) The excavated dirt was being piled up on the north side, to a height of 10 meters
(3) The building experienced uneven lateral pressure from south and north
(4) This resulted in a lateral pressure of 3,000 tonnes, which was greater than why the pilings could tolerate. Thus the building toppled over in the southerly direction.
First, the apartment building was constructed
Then the plan called for an underground garage to be dug out.
The excavated soil was piled up on the other side of the building.
Heavy rains resulted in water seeping into the ground.
The building began to shift and the concrete pilings were snapped
due to the uneven lateral pressures.
The building began to tilt.
And thus came the eighth wonder of the world.
-  The Shaoguan Mass Incident (06/27/2009)
(Xinhua) Guangdong toy factory brawl leaves 2 dead, 118 injured
A dispute led to a fight involving hundreds of people Thursday at the Xuri Toy Factory in Shaoguan City, a municipal government spokesman said. More than 400 police had to be called in to restore order. The injured were rushed to hospitals, but two workers died, the spokesman said. All the 118 injured were in stable condition, he said. No details about the dispute are available. Police are investigating the incident.
(Reuters) Ethnic tensions spark brawl at China factory-report
Ethnic clashes between Han Chinese and Uighur workers at a toy factory in China's southern Guangdong province killed two people and injured 118, a newspaper reported on Saturday. In a massive night brawl at the "Early Light" toy factory in Guangdong's Shaoguan city, a group of Han Chinese fought with Uighurs from China's northwestern Xinjiang region who had been recently recruited to the factory, Hong Kong's Ming Pao newspaper reported. The violence lasted until the early hours of Friday morning and at least 16 were seriously injured, the newspaper reported.
About 400 riot police had to be deployed to quell the unrest as the rival workers battled, some with knives and metal pipes. The violence was reportedly sparked by a spate of crimes at the factory following the arrival of around 600 Uighur workers in May this year, the newspaper said. "Some people carrying metal pipes entered a dormitory to attack Uighur workers. But the Uighurs fought back with knives, leading to a fierce brawl involving hundreds," the newspaper said.
The factory was reportedly owned by Hong Kong tycoon Francis Choi, one of the city's leading toy manufacturers.
Xinjiang's majority Uighur population is a largely Muslim group with a culture close to other Turkic parts of central Asia. Many Uighurs resent Han Chinese rule, complaining they're marginalised economically and politically in their own land, while having to tolerate a rising influx of Han Chinese migrants.
What kind of news reporting is this when you don't want to deal with the reason for the massive brawl? I know that such reporting should be verified, but can't you just say "unconfirmed Internet reports say that the reason was blah blah blah ...?"
Here is such an unconfirmed first-person Internet report:
At 22:00 on June 25, I came back from drinking with my colleagues and we found several police vehicles present at the factory. At first, we did not know what was going on. Then we learned that the Uighurs dragged one of my Han sisters into their dormitory and attempted to rape her. This caused our Han compatriots to become outraged. They wanted to go and beat up the perpetrator. But the factory security guards stopped them. Even when the female victim identified the perpetrator, the factory security guards still refused to arrest him. This caused even greater public anger as the people upstairs tossed all garbage downstairs.
From the photos, it can be seen how angry we were. We tossed everything that we could rip apart downstairs. The factory security guards came upstairs to try to stop us. A colleague was seriously injured during the two brawls of that process.
Half an hour later, the Shaoguan city government sent another thirty to forty anti-riot police officers as reinforcement.
Soon after the anti-riot police officers arrived, the Uighurs organized several dozen people and armed them with restricted knives and iron rods. They charged out and assaulted all the Han men and women that they saw, causing severe injuries to many persons. The anti-riot police officers did nothing. Since we were unprepared for this eventuality, we retreated into the dormitories. The Uighurs broke all our windows.
The Han began to search for weapons inside their dormitories. They dissembled the beds and obtained iron rods and instruments. Then they charged out of the dormitories and took raging revenge against the Uighurs. They smashed all the window glass and car windows. They assaulted every Uighur that they came across, one dormitory room at a time.
Many Uighurs began to flee into the back hill. The riot continued until 4:30pm. There were dozens of Uighur casualties. The anti-riot police officers served only as spectators, eyewitnesses and body haulers.
By 5am, the city government sent in two divisions of anti-riot police officers to escort the Uighurs out. The riot finally reached an end.
The following is a news report in a Hong Kong newspaper based upon Internet information.
According to a QQ BBS report made by a factory worker, the Early Light factory had hired a large group of Uighur workers last month. These people committed many robberies and raped a female worker on June 14. The rapist was only fired from his jog. Several days later, another female worker was dragged into the dormitory and gang raped. The suspect was arrested by the police but released several days later. A third rape occurred in the factory, but the management did nothing.
According to a former female Early Light factory worker, the first rape occurred in the woods behind the factory and the perpetrators were three Uighur male workers. One week later, another female worker went out for a midnight snack and was dragged into the Uighur dormitory and gang raped. When the security guards brought her out, she was stark naked. The factory offered her 10,000 RMB to keep quiet. This was the last straw for the Han workers.
On the night before yesterday, the Han workers in dormitory buildings number one and two began to chant: "Chase the Uighurs off!" They began to vandalize things. The space between the two buildings was littered with garbage receptacles and fire extinguishers. More than one hundred people went wild and used wood sticks to break the window glass. Some of them charged into the Uighur dormitory to assault people. They dragged one Uighur after another one and beat them.
The Uighur retaliated with knives. The Han summoned more than 200 people and the brawl got vicious. Since this incident involves an ethnic minority group, the police acted very cautiously because they wanted to avoid a political incident.
The Ming Pao article cited by Reuters also included more details:
The "King of Toys" Francis Choi was interviewed by us yesterday and he said that this was an ethnic conflict problem, mainly because the Uighurs were not accustomed to the lifestyle habits of the Guangdong people. He said that the government encourages the factories to hire poor people, which was why this factory hired these Uighurs.
... 118 persons were injured, of which 79 were Uighurs. There were two deaths, both Uighurs.
(Reuters) China police hold man over ethnic brawl-report June 28, 2009
Police in southern China have detained a man accused of spreading false rumours of rape over the Internet that sparked a deadly ethnic brawl at a toy factory on the weekend. China's official Xinhua news agency reported late on Sunday that the man, a former worker at the Xuri or "Early Light" toy factory in Shaoguan city, Guangdong province, posted a message on a local website claiming, "Six Xinjiang boys raped two innocent girls" at the factory. Police said the unfounded claim was behind the massive Friday night brawl between a group of Han Chinese and Uighur workers from China's northwestern Xinjiang region who had been recently recruited to the factory.
The brawl was an outburst of long-standing tensions between Han Chinese and Uighurs, a largely Muslim ethnic group with a language and culture close to the Turkic peoples of central Asia. In the fighting, two workers from Xinjiang were killed and 118 people were injured, Xinhua reported. The man, surnamed Zhu, "faked the information to express his discontent" over failing to find new work after quitting his job at the factory, said Xinhua. The brief report did not say what crime he has been accused of.
(Xinhua) Rumormonger held over south China toy factory brawl June 29, 2009
Police has detained a former worker at a toy factory for posting a web rumor that triggered a mass brawl in south China's Guangdong Province.
The fight Thursday night was between hundreds of local workers and workers from the northwestern Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Regionat the Xuri Toy Factory in Shaoguan City. The brawl left two Xinjiang workers dead and another 118 injured. A post on a local website that said "Six Xinjiang boys raped two innocent girls at the Xuri Toy Factory" caused the brawl, a municipal government spokesman said.
Police found that the former worker of Xuri, surnamed Zhu, faked the information to express his discontent as Zhu failed to get re-employed after quitting the job. Police found no rape cases at the Xuri Toy Factory.