Desperation around collapsed PGG building

A man rescued from rubble in Cashel Mall. If you know this man, please contact our newsroom at news@dompost.co.nz
1 of 46IAIN McGREGOR/The Press
A man rescued from rubble in Cashel Mall. If you know this man, please contact our newsroom at news@dompost.co.nz
A marquee in Hagley Park, originally set-up for the Ellerslie Flower Show, now being used as temporary accommodation.
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A marquee in Hagley Park, originally set-up for the Ellerslie Flower Show, now being used as temporary accommodation.
A Christchurch tram covered in debris.
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A Christchurch tram covered in debris.
Firefighters and office workers try and extinguish a blaze and rescue trapped people at the CTV building on Madras Street.
4 of 46CARYS MONTEATH/The Press
Firefighters and office workers try and extinguish a blaze and rescue trapped people at the CTV building on Madras Street.
A damaged church on the corner of Manchester Street.
5 of 46CARYS MONTEATH/The Press
A damaged church on the corner of Manchester Street.
The Press Building (foreground) and the Christ Church Cathedral at rear.
6 of 46DON SCOTT/The Press
The Press Building (foreground) and the Christ Church Cathedral at rear.
Patients and staff outside the emergency department at the Christchurch Hospital.
7 of 46CARYS MONTEATH/The Press
Patients and staff outside the emergency department at the Christchurch Hospital.
Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker speaks to media at the Civil defense centre at the Christchurch Arts Gallery.
8 of 46CARYS MONTEATH/The Press
Christchurch Mayor Bob Parker speaks to media at the Civil defense centre at the Christchurch Arts Gallery.
Destroyed shops on Manchester St in the Christchurch CBD.
9 of 46CARYS MONTEATH/The Press
Destroyed shops on Manchester St in the Christchurch CBD.
Firefighters in action in central Christchurch.
10 of 46JOHN KIRK-ANDERSON/The Press
Firefighters in action in central Christchurch.
An injured man receives assistance.
11 of 46JOHN KIRK-ANDERSON/The Press
An injured man receives assistance.
Rubble of a building following the second Christchurch earthquake.
12 of 46CHARLIE GATES
Rubble of a building following the second Christchurch earthquake.
Earthquake damage to the PGG-Wrightson building.
13 of 46JOHN KIRK-ANDERSON/The Press
Earthquake damage to the PGG-Wrightson building.
Water damage in on the corner of Pages Rd and ANZAC Dr.
14 of 46DON SCOTT/The Press
Water damage in on the corner of Pages Rd and ANZAC Dr.
Army troops arrive in Lyttelton.
15 of 46KIRK HARGREAVES/ The Press
Army troops arrive in Lyttelton.
Cliff damage behind Redcliffs school damaging homes.
16 of 46DON SCOTT/The Press
Cliff damage behind Redcliffs school damaging homes.
Flooding in Ferrymead.
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Flooding in Ferrymead.
Cars on the sewage ponds roundabout because they cant get over bridge street bridge (at left) due to damage.
18 of 46DON SCOTT/The Press
Cars on the sewage ponds roundabout because they cant get over bridge street bridge (at left) due to damage.
Earthquake damage inside The Press building.
19 of 46JOHN KIRK-ANDERSON/The Press
Earthquake damage inside The Press building.
Brougham street packed as people try to get away and around the city.
20 of 46DON SCOTT/The Press
Brougham street packed as people try to get away and around the city.
Men celebrate being rescued from the totalled PGG-Wrightson building.
21 of 46JOHN KIRK-ANDERSON/The Press
Men celebrate being rescued from the totalled PGG-Wrightson building.
Rockfall on Dyers Pass Road.
22 of 46JOHN KIRK-ANDERSON/The Press
Rockfall on Dyers Pass Road.
The PGG-Wrightson building on Manchester St.
23 of 46IAIN MCGREGOR/The Press
The PGG-Wrightson building on Manchester St.
A man lies injured near Cashel Mall.
24 of 46IAIN MCGREGOR/The Press
A man lies injured near Cashel Mall.
An injured man near Cashel Mall in central Christchurch.
25 of 46IAIN MCGREGOR/The Press
An injured man near Cashel Mall in central Christchurch.
Christ's College.
26 of 46DON SCOTT/The Press
Christ's College.
The PGG building across the road from the Band Rotunder on the Avon River.
27 of 46DON SCOTT/The Press
The PGG building across the road from the Band Rotunder on the Avon River.
Oxford Terrace Baptist Church with the 911 memorial to NY fire fighters lost in the terrorist attack at left on the bank of the Avon.
28 of 46DON SCOTT/The Press
Oxford Terrace Baptist Church with the 911 memorial to NY fire fighters lost in the terrorist attack at left on the bank of the Avon.
An injured man uses his phone.
29 of 46IAIN MCGREGOR/The Press
An injured man uses his phone.
A smashed car is seen in a car parking building.
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A smashed car is seen in a car parking building.
Crushed cars are seen in a car parking building.
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Crushed cars are seen in a car parking building.
Collapsed buildings in Manchester Street.
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Collapsed buildings in Manchester Street.
Collapsed buildings and debris are seen along Manchester Street.
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Collapsed buildings and debris are seen along Manchester Street.
Rescue workers search for survivors through debris.
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Rescue workers search for survivors through debris.
Rescuers stop to listen for sounds from survivors in a collapsed building in Manchester Street.
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Rescuers stop to listen for sounds from survivors in a collapsed building in Manchester Street.
Rescue workers search for survivors through debris.
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Rescue workers search for survivors through debris.
A woman is removed from the wreckage.
37 of 46IAIN MCGREGOR/The Press
A woman is removed from the wreckage.
An injured women is comforted near Cashel Mall in central Christchurch.
38 of 46IAIN MCGREGOR/The Press
An injured women is comforted near Cashel Mall in central Christchurch.
A bus covered in building debris.
39 of 46Getty Images
A bus covered in building debris.
Flooding near Ferrymead.
40 of 46SHERIDAN SUBRITZKY
Flooding near Ferrymead.
The Baptist Church on Madras St.
41 of 46IAN MCGREGOR/The Press
The Baptist Church on Madras St.
Flooding near Ferrymead.
42 of 46SHERIDAN SUBRITZKY
Flooding near Ferrymead.
A man waiting to be rescued from Forsyth Bar building.
43 of 46IAIN MCGREGOR/The Press
A man waiting to be rescued from Forsyth Bar building.
Earthquake damage at  Cashel Mall in central Christchurch.
44 of 46IAIN MCGREGOR/The Press
Earthquake damage at Cashel Mall in central Christchurch.
Earthquake damage in central Christchurch.
45 of 46IAIN MCGREGOR/The Press
Earthquake damage in central Christchurch.
The back of the collapsed PGG building.
46 of 46RICHARD COSGROVE/The Press
The back of the collapsed PGG building.

Family members gathered outside the PGG building on Cambridge Tce in central Christchurch are trying to stay hopeful that loved ones trapped inside will make it out alive.

The top three floors of the four-storey building completely collapsed in today's shallow 6.3 earthquake.

There were varying reports as to just how many people were trapped, but those at the scene reported there could be dozens unaccounted for.

This bus was hit by falling debris.
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This bus was hit by falling debris.
The four-storey Pyne Gould Corporation building collapsed, and many people were feared trapped inside.
2 of 36Don Scott
The four-storey Pyne Gould Corporation building collapsed, and many people were feared trapped inside.
Rescue workers frantically try to find those trapped inside the Pyne Gould Corporation building.
3 of 36RICHARD COSGROVE/The Press
Rescue workers frantically try to find those trapped inside the Pyne Gould Corporation building.
Rescue workers help during the Christchurch earthquake.
4 of 36Getty
Rescue workers help during the Christchurch earthquake.
Measurements from the quake drum from McQueens Valley as the earthquake struck.
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Measurements from the quake drum from McQueens Valley as the earthquake struck.
Scenes of devastation in Christchurch.
6 of 36RICHARD COSGROVE/The Press
Scenes of devastation in Christchurch.
A scene of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
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A scene of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
8 of 36Getty
Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
9 of 36RICHARD COSGROVE/The Press
Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
10 of 36RICHARD COSGROVE/The Press
Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
People being rescued from the fourth floor of the Pyne Gould building.
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People being rescued from the fourth floor of the Pyne Gould building.
Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
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Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
13 of 36RICHARD COSGROVE/The Press
Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
14 of 36Getty
Scenes of devastation from the Christchurch earthquake.
Rescue workers search for survivors through the debris.
15 of 36Getty Images
Rescue workers search for survivors through the debris.
Trying to get an injured person to hospital.
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Trying to get an injured person to hospital.
A man runs for cover.
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A man runs for cover.
The destruction on Manchester Street.
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The destruction on Manchester Street.
It is thought this building houses an international school.
19 of 36Twitter
It is thought this building houses an international school.
Inside the Christchurch Cathedral.
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Inside the Christchurch Cathedral.
The Christ Church Cathedral.
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The Christ Church Cathedral.
A woman is rescued from the building.
22 of 36Richard Cosgrove/The Press
A woman is rescued from the building.
The old Canterbury Provincial Chambers.
23 of 36Don Scott/The Press
The old Canterbury Provincial Chambers.
Many cars have been crushed by debris.
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Many cars have been crushed by debris.
Cars trapped in the silt clogging the streets of Christchurch.
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Cars trapped in the silt clogging the streets of Christchurch.
There are fears that many people are trapped in the collapsed buildings.
26 of 36Olivia Carville
There are fears that many people are trapped in the collapsed buildings.
A person is trapped in the Christ Church Cathedral.
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A person is trapped in the Christ Church Cathedral.
Cars crushed under debris.
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Cars crushed under debris.
Water pipes have burst throughout the city.
29 of 36Richard Cosgrove/The Press
Water pipes have burst throughout the city.
More damage from the quake.
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More damage from the quake.
Damage from the earthquake.
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Damage from the earthquake.
Damage from the earthquake.
32 of 36Nicole Mathewson
Damage from the earthquake.
A church on Gloucester Street.
33 of 36Laura Campbell
A church on Gloucester Street.
A collapsed building.
34 of 36Laura Campbell
A collapsed building.
A car is crushed by a collapsed building.
35 of 36Laura Campbell
A car is crushed by a collapsed building.
Bottles and food were thrown off the shelves.
36 of 36Laura Campbell
Bottles and food were thrown off the shelves.

Rescuers were using sledge hammers to get into the building and pull people out, as power to the city has been turned off.

A group of five people who were working for Marsh insurance assessors were the first to be freed.

They were trapped together and said they kept morale up by talking to each other.

TRAPPED: Rescue workers frantically try to find those trapped inside the Pyne Gould Corporation building.
RICHARD COSGROVE/The Press
TRAPPED: Rescue workers frantically try to find those trapped inside the Pyne Gould Corporation building.

Press reporter Martin van Beynen said the mood was still hopeful among families gathered outside the building.

''The mood is hopeful but sombre. People are teary eyed and hugging each other.''

David Hume was waiting for news of his wife of two years, Kathryn. He had not had any contact from her since the earthquake.

The financial planner was on the first floor of the building, he was at home and saw the collapsed building on television.

''I drove to the edge of town and ran from there. It's unbelievable how a new building like that can collapse.''

Wally Tower's wife Gwynn also works on the first floor, he has had no communication from her at all.

His son rang him from Australia after seeing the building on television.

Another woman arrived at the scene crying, ''My baby's in there''.

One man, who declined to be named, said his fiancé was trapped inside. The couple were due to marry on Friday.

Scott Wishheart's partner Anna Harris was working on secondment for Perpetual Plus on the first floor. He had not received a text message from her but another person helping at the scene had told him that contact had been made with her.

The army have cordoned off the scene and rescuers have set up three entry points into the building.

Ross Blackler was on the ground floor about to walk upstairs when the building came down.

''I headed for the doorway and the door came down on top of me. I had no choice. I just stayed on the ground and covered my head.''

''I'm so happy to be alive.''

David Sandeman, 71, was one of the first five rescued.

The five were trapped together on the fourth floor.

''We were trapped under furniture, with probably 12 inches of space. We're just so grateful the guys got up there when the building was rocking and rolling and dug us out.''

''I hope someone will buy me a Lotto ticket.''

Jeff McLay, 50, said they all kept reassuring each other they would be OK as they waited to be rescued.

''I didn't think that would ever be me,'' he said. ''It was pretty awful.''

He said about 60 people worked in the building in total.

''It's not good at all,'' he said.

The Press