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No more bodies found after factory collapse

Bangladeshi salvage workers are nearing the end of their search for victims of a collapsed factory.

The 8-storey Rana Plaza building collapsed on 24 April 2013 in Bangladesh with around 3,000 workers in it. Picture: AFP

DHAKA - Bangladeshi salvage workers on Monday neared the end of their search for victims of the collapse of a factory building, scouring the basement of the complex that crumbled in on itself killing 1,127 people.

That toll from the world's worst industrial accident since the Bhopal disaster in India in 1984 could be the final one as no more bodies were found on Monday, a spokesperson at the army control room coordinating the salvage operation said.

"The rescuers have reached the basement where the chances of finding more dead bodies are very low," said the spokesperson, Captain Tazul Islam.

Army spokesperson Shahinul Islam said that the site would be handed over to the district administration on Tuesday, upon completion of the salvage work.

A series of deadly incidents at factories, including a fire in November that killed 112 people, has focused global attention on safety standards in Bangladesh's booming garment industry.

A total of eight people were killed in a fire at a factory last week, which an industry association said may have been started deliberately.

About 2,500 people were rescued from the Rana Plaza, in Savar, a commercial suburb of the capital, Dhaka, after the April 24 collapse. Many of those saved suffered serious injuries.

The disaster, believed to have been triggered when generators were started up during a blackout, has raised questions about the use by Western retailers of the impoverished South Asian nation as a source of cheap goods.

At least nine people have been arrested in connection with the disaster, including the building's owner and bosses of the factories it housed.

The government has accused the owners and builders of the eight-storey complex of using shoddy building materials, including substandard rods, bricks and cement, and not obtaining the necessary clearances.