Leaning Ra’anana apartment building demolished amid fears of collapse

Building, home to 14 families, was tilting to the side following construction work; Beit Shemesh apartment building also evacuated after ceiling falls in

Amy Spiro is a reporter and writer with The Times of Israel.

The demolition of a building in Ra'anana on October 4, 2021. (Screenshot: Fire and Rescue Authority)
The demolition of a building in Ra'anana on October 4, 2021. (Screenshot: Fire and Rescue Authority)

A residential building in Ra’anana was demolished on Monday evening, hours after it was evacuated of all residents over fears of its imminent collapse.

The three-story building, located on Hagalil Street in the city north of Tel Aviv, was undergoing renovations to strengthen its infrastructure. But the Fire and Rescue Authority reported Monday morning that due to digging activity around the building “the earth sank slightly and the building tilted slightly to the side.”

Fourteen families living in the building were evacuated, and hours later city authorities decided to demolish the structure to prevent it from collapsing. Residents of surrounding buildings were also evacuated.

On Tuesday, a building in Kiryat Ata that housed apartments and commercial space was evacuated after fears stemming from cracks in the walls, said Fire and Rescue Services. But a city engineer who later visited the site said there was no concern over collapse, and residents could return.

On Monday, a residential building in Beit Shemesh was evacuated after a ceiling collapsed. Police said that they worked alongside the Fire and Rescue Authority to evacuate the families living in the three-story building, pending a full investigation by engineers and city officials. Later in the day, the residents returned to their homes pending repairs to the building, according to the municipality, which said there was no fear of imminent collapse.

Many residents of apartment buildings across the country have been on high alert in recent weeks after a building in Holon collapsed a day after it was evacuated. The 36 families living in the building were ordered to leave last month by the Fire and Rescue Authority, and the building collapsed about 30 hours later.

Since then, buildings in Bnei Brak, Jerusalem, Haifa and other cities have been evacuated over fears of a repeat incident.

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