Girl's Wiggling Fingers Give Rescuers Hope at Collapsed School

At least 21 children died when school in Mexico collapsed during earthquake
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 20, 2017 6:05 PM CDT
Dozens Still Feared Trapped in Collapsed Mexican School
Volunteers and rescue workers search for children trapped inside at the collapsed Enrique Rebsamen school in Mexico City, Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017.   (AP Photo/Gerardo Carrillo)

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto said Wednesday afternoon that up to 30 people are still trapped inside the rubble of the Enrique Rebsamen School in Mexico City, CNN reports. It's unclear how many of the missing are still alive. The school, which houses children as young as kindergarten, collapsed following the 7.1 magnitude earthquake that struck Mexico Tuesday and killed at least 224 people. According to Reuters, the bodies of at least 21 children and four teachers have been pulled from what was once a private school. “We have a lot of hope that some will still be rescued,” says one of the dozens of rescuers, both volunteer and professional, working the scene.

A young girl's wiggling fingers kept that hope alive Wednesday, the AP reports. Rescuers saw the girl early in the day and had her move her hand to confirm she was alive. They were able to snake a hose to her to get her water, but the hours-long process of carefully getting to her was ongoing. "We won't stop," Mexico City's Social Development Department stated. Hundreds of people, including neighbors, were pulling rubble from the collapsed school by hand. One neighbor says the community has come together in the wake of the school collapse. "Houses were turned into hospitals," she tells CNN. "We brought shovels, spikes, first aid material." (Read more earthquake stories.)

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