Around one thirty in the morning, last Thursday, June 24, an entire wing del edificio Champlain Towers South of 12-story apartments near Miami Beach, Florida, collapsed, leaving hundreds of people under a mountain of debris. The residents of the town of Surfside, located to the north, alerted the firefighters who began at the same time the rescue of survivors. That same morning, two people were taken out of the rubble (one of them, the 14-year-old boy, Jonah Handler) and another 53 from part of the structure that remained standing.
President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill visit ground zero of the landslide today and are scheduled to meet with the families of the victims.
An entire wing of the building located off the coast fell. 55 of the 136 apartments collapsed burying hundreds of sleeping neighbors. The number of residents located and safe was 120, either because they remained in the tower that did not collapse or because they were not at that time in their homes.
Balance of dead and missing
There are still 147 people without locating. The death toll rises to 18 and with each passing day the hope of finding more people alive is less. The first confirmed victim of this tragedy was Stacey Fang, the mother of the boy rescued at dawn when the building collapsed. Among the disappeared are many members of the Jewish community, with a presence in South Florida and citizens of several Latin American countries: ten people from Argentina, six from Paraguay, six from Venezuela, six from Colombia and three from Uruguay.
A contingent of 300 firefighters and experts Rescuers have not rested for the past week trying to rescue more people from under the mountain of concrete and plaster left by the collapse. A specialized team arrived from Israel with extensive experience in this type of task due to its history of warfare and a corps of engineers from the US Army. The so-called “Mexican moles” that were born in the face of the disasters caused are also found there for the earthquakes in the Aztec country.
On the third day and a half, the firefighters stopped hearing sounds under the rubble which overshadowed the panaroma for the families of the victims, who are waiting in a hotel near the affected area for news of their relatives.
The causes of the collapse are still unknown. But a 2018 report prepared by a consulting firm warned of significant structural damage that required repairs to the tower, but a month later an inspector from the small municipality gave guarantees that the property “was safe.” In said report it was pointed out that in order to pass the mandatory 40-year certification The construction of the building (from 1981) had to repair a cracked concrete block where the water that did not drain was stagnant.
The cost to undertake these repairs in 2018 was 9.1 million dollars. But in April, the president of the condominium board warned that the situation had worsened and that the expenses rose to 16 million dollars, about 100,000 for each apartment.
County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava has launched a 30-day audit for all buildings over 40 years old.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism