Search shifts from rescue to healing

Search shifts from rescue to recovery

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Search and rescue groups continue to operate in the debris at the website of the collapsed Champlain Towers South apartment in Surfside, Florida, on July 6, 2021.

Eva Marie Uzcategui | AFP | Getty Images

The search at the website of a collapsed Florida condo structure is moving from a rescue effort to a healing operation as the possibility of discovering survivors reduces, Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava stated in an interview Wednesday afternoon.

For 2 weeks, rescue groups have actually pursued painstaking search-and-rescue efforts to discover more victims in the debris of the collapsed Champlain Towers South in Surfside, Florida. But the possibility of discovering somebody alive is “near zero,” Surfside Mayor Charles Burkett stated Wednesday. 

Levine Cava likewise revealed that the death toll reached 54 individuals, with 86 still unaccounted for.

“I could not be prouder of our team. The extraordinary men and women from here, at home, and from around the world who have given this search everything they have, day in and day out,” Levine Cava stated.

“At this point, we have truly exhausted every option available to us in the search-and-rescue mission. Today is about beginning the transition to recovery, so that we can help bring closure to the families who’ve been suffering and waiting for us.”

The shift from rescue to healing will happen at midnight tonight and will be marked by a minute of silence in front of the structure website with very first responders and faith leaders, Levine Cava included.

Search-and-rescue groups have actually had the ability to reach locations of the stack that were unattainable previous to the demolition of the structure Sunday night, without any reported injuries to any very first responders in spite of hard conditions at the website, Levine Cava stated.

The structure was taken down in a regulated demolition due to issues that the standing structure was unsteady and might fall on very first responders, as Hurricane Elsa approached Florida.

Weather conditions cleaned up Wednesday, enabling rescue groups to continue their search efforts in spite of preliminary issues they’d need to briefly stop briefly work, Levine Cava stated in the early morning. Forecasters devalued Elsa from a typhoon to a hurricane Wednesday after it made landfall along Florida’s north Gulf coast.

The Division of Emergency Management has actually gotten 42 resource demands from people affected by Tropical Storm Elsa, with more than 26,000 experiencing power blackouts, according to Florida Lt. Gov. Jeanette Nunez.

More than 10,000 workers are prepared to react to these blackouts and supply resources such as water, food and generators, Nunez included.

After a quick stop to destroy the standing particles, Search and Rescue workers continue operating in the debris stack of the partly collapsed 12-story Champlain Towers South apartment on July 5, 2021 in Surfside, Florida.

Giorgio Viera | AFP | Getty Images

Surfside Vice Mayor Tina Paul stated authorities are working to discover long-lasting real estate for survivors of the condo collapse, with numerous still remaining in a hotel.

“That’s also a priority, just to help rebuild their lives,” Paul stated. “The best way to start is to have a home that you can call your own.”

Paul included that authorities are getting questions from condo board members and presidents about the security of their structures. The city of Surfside has actually sent a release requiring geotechnical surveying of residential or commercial properties that are more than 30 years of ages, however Paul stated much better suggestions are presently being established.

Levine Cava stated that Miami-Dade County is continuing to move on with a 30-day audit that assesses all houses above 4 stories that are 40 years of ages or older and “have not completed the process to identify and address any issues.”

The county has actually assessed an overall of 40 structures under the audit and determined a structure with 4 terraces that were considered risky, according to Levine Cava. While the structure was not left, the terraces were right away shut down.

The staying part of the partly collapsed 12-story Champlain Towers South apartment structure falls in a regulated demolition on July 4, 2021 in Surfside, Florida.

Joe Raedle | Getty Images

Other cities, such as North Miami Beach and Miami Beach, have actually started to perform their own audits also, she included.

“There will be changes, there will be improvements made,” Levine Cava stated.

Burkett likewise offered updates on Champlain Towers North, the sibling home of the collapsed apartment structure. Engineers and authorities are at the home examining whether it is safe for locals to reside in.

Burkett stated it will take a number of weeks to collect enough proof of any structural problems in Champlain Towers North.

The reason for the collapse of Champlain Towers South is still unidentified. 

Recent proof exposes that the 40-year-old structure had actually revealed indications of structural damage as far back as 2018, with waterproofing problems below the swimming pool and breaking in the underground parking lot.