Rescue and human resources workers are working to recover the remains of the collapsed 12-story Champlain Towers South Condo building on July 8, 2021 in Surfside, Florida.
Anna Money Maker | Getty Images
At least 94 are confirmed dead and 22 are missing at the site of the collapse of a 12-story condo building in Surfside, Florida as the search moves into week three, Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said at a news conference Monday morning .
“Please keep praying with me for those we have lost, the grieving families and those who are still waiting,” said Levine Cava.
Since the collapse of the Champlain Towers South on June 24th, search teams have worked tirelessly to rescue victims from the rubble. However, authorities said last week that the possibility of finding someone alive after the collapse was now “near zero”.
Search teams have shifted operations from rescue to salvage, and authorities hope to complete searches in the coming weeks.
A search team from Israel left the premises on Saturday. The team had worked with first responders from Miami, Miami-Dade County, and Mexico to comb through the debris from the collapse and were recognized for their contribution to searches during a memorial walk near the site.
“This walk was really a wonderful moment for those of us who were able to take part,” said Levine Cava on Sunday.
“Members of the community, first responders, international partners – we all came together again to acknowledge the tremendous tragedy and extraordinary efforts of everyone who helped us through these difficult, difficult days,” she said.
Surfside Mayor Charles Burkett said Sunday that recovery efforts will continue until all of the missing are found.
“It’s been two weeks and the conditions are very, very tough. But that has not slowed down the work,” said Burkett on Sunday.
Search and rescue personnel work on the site of a collapsed Florida condominium complex in Surfside, Miami, in this handout picture dated July 2, 2021.
Miami Dade Fire Department | via Reuters
An investigation into the cause of the collapse continues, with the National Institute of Standards and Technology evaluating the remains of the structure and running tests on several pieces of concrete.
Recent evidence suggests that Champlain Towers South had structural defects as early as 2018, with waterproofing problems under the pool and cracks in the underground car park. Experts have also said that the repeal of a Florida law in 2010 that requires condos to schedule repairs may have contributed to the collapse.
Champlain Towers North, the sister property of the collapsed condo building, is also being investigated to see if the building is safe.
Burkett said Sunday that recent tests on samples of material from the north building show that the concrete strength is “very good”. Visual inspections and additional tests will be done to assess the safety of the structure, Burkett said.