On January 7th, a tragedy occurred in Jongno. A lot of people mourned the horrific event of a hotel collapsing. Two construction crew workers became trapped under the rubble when the building suddenly collapsed. One deaf worker was found 19 hours later and another worker was rescued 39 hours after the collapse. Two hotel employees were also injured during the accident. According to safety inspectors, rescue activities were delayed because of a secondary collapse and the narrow passage way down to the trapped individuals. Some people argue that the lack of safety measures in place caused this calamity. In reality, last year most accidents in Korea were found to be safety—lack of—related such as faulty subway screen doors, car accidents and fires in buildings. According to experts, the main reason for the accidents in the first place is inadequate safety requirements. The Jongno hotel collapse forced Seoul city government to make revisions to the city’s safety regulations. To guarantee safety on construction sites, the government has increased punishments for safety law violations. Also, now before building demolition can starts, demolition companies must obtain proper local government permits. Local government will now be responsible for overseeing any construction and demolition so that the safety of all citizens is preserved. Besides these measures, Seoul government will also host a number of safety workshops and programs that alert people to the importance of safety.
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