Sunday, November 9, 2008

Death toll passes 90 in Haiti school collapse

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Nov 8 (Reuters) - The death toll in the collapse of a ramshackle school in Haiti rose above 90 on Saturday after rescue workers uncovered a room full of dead, many of them children, officials said.

Civil protection service head Alta Jean-Baptiste said there were 84 people confirmed dead and 150 injured as of noon. Another civil protection official, Michel Joseph Jr., said he had seen eight more bodies, bringing the count to 92.

"We haven't been able to get them out yet," Joseph said as rescue workers arrived from the United States and the French Caribbean island of Martinique to help the ill-equipped and impoverished country and U.N. peacekeepers posted there search for survivors.

Officials said 700 children were enrolled at the three-story La Promesse school, but it was not known how many were in the building when it caved in on Friday while class was in session.

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