Three students killed in South Africa school walkway collapse
By KRISTA MAHR, Associated Press
JOHANNESBURG (AP) — At least three students are dead and "scores" are trapped in the rubble after a walkway collapsed at a school outside Johannesburg, a South African official said Friday.
Panyaza Lesufi, the head of education for Gauteng province, posted the toll on Twitter shortly after the collapse at the Hoerskool Driehoek high school in Vanderbijlpark. Two boys and a girl were killed, Lesufi said.
"It is painful to see those tiny bodies in that state," he said. The school has been closed.
It was not immediately clear what caused the collapse. Local media posted photos of a large slab and scattered bricks with the scene blocked off by emergency tape.
Emergency services provider Netcare911 said at least four people may have died and at least five people were critically injured.
The national Department of Education extended condolences to the families of the students killed.
A statement by AfriForum, a civil society organization that represents the rights of Afrikaners, sent out a notice urging people to avoid the area so as not to interfere with the work of emergency responders.