An apartment building was evacuated of all its residents Tuesday evening in the city of Bat Yam, south of Tel Aviv, after a woman reported to emergency services that the damage to the structure was so severe that she was having difficulty opening doors and windows.
The resident in the four-story building on Masaryk Street in the coastal city called Fire and Rescue Services to say the building was crumbling and full of cracks, according to Hebrew media reports.
She also told the service that doors and windows in her home were jamming.
First responders who arrived told residents to leave the building until the city engineer assessed the site.
A city engineer ordered the 15 families living there to leave immediately and ordered the structure to be sealed off over fears it could collapse.
Following the assessment, the residents were told to gather some personal items and then abandon the building.
Photos of the building showed deep cracks running up the sides.
Bat Yam Mayor Tzvika Brot ordered that the residents be found somewhere to stay at the municipality’s expense. A statement from the city hall said that municipal welfare services were assisting the families.
In September, a residential building in nearby Holon housing 36 families collapsed a day after it was evacuated under similar circumstances.
The building gave way on its own, reflecting how close the situation had been to becoming a mass-casualty disaster resembling the collapse in June of a high-rise residential building in Florida, which killed 98 people.
There were no reports of injuries as a result of the Holon collapse, although many families lost all their belongings.
— חדשות 13 (@newsisrael13) September 12, 2021
The collapse was caught on video that was shared on social media.