138 evacuated after building partially collapses in central Riga

Around midnight on December 11, an abandoned five-story house partially collapsed on Jeruzālemes st. in central Riga, and 138 people were evacuated from the surrounding houses.

The State Fire and Rescue Service received a call to the scene at around 1 a.m. 

    A Riga Construction Board representative inspected the building shortly after. She confirmed that the building does not pose an immediate threat to the surrounding buildings and that people can return to their homes, the fire service said.

    "The owners, together with the Riga City Council, should look into the future over limiting the possibility that parts of the city could fall on passersby or their cars," said fire service representative Agrita Vītola.

    In 2014, the firm that owns the building was taxed with an increased real estate levy applied to decrepit buildings, the city council said.

    A meeting was called at the city council on Monday about a potentially dangerous building on 3 Jeruzalemes st.

    In the meeting, Riga City Council representative Oļegs Burovs said that the owners, SIA Grost, were contacted on Monday morning and will be tasked to demolish the abandoned house within the next few days. 

    The owners are non-residents living in Russia. They had received a demolition permit back in 2012.

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