A 12-story oceanfront condominium in Surfside, a Miami neighborhood collapsed Thursday morning, leaving at least four dead, 10 injured and more than 150 people missing.
Authorities are in the midst of recovery efforts and are still investigating the cause of the collapse. Here’s what we know so far.
The collapse took place around 1:30 a.m. Thursday morning. Residents of the part of the building that remained intact said they were awakened by a boom that was louder than thunder, followed by a second boom that shook the building.
Some residents opened their front doors to find a void where their neighbors’ apartments would have been across the hall.
“That full side of the building wasn’t there,” Marian Lopez, a resident of the building, told the Miami Herald. “The apartments were gone.
Disturbing surveillance camera footage from a nearby building shows the section of the condo falling into a cloud of dust within seconds.
How many people are missing
As of Friday morning, the number of people missing rose to 159, a dramatic increase from the 99 people whose officials said were not found yesterday.
“Sadly, it has been a tragic night,” said Levine Cava, the mayor of Miami-Dade County, who said on Friday that authorities “would continue to search because we still have hopes of finding people alive. “.
A reunification site has been set up at the Surfside Community Center, but no additional survivors have been found since Thursday morning. Many people from Latin American countries, including Colombia, Chile and Cuba, have been reported missing along with those from the region’s Jewish community.
A distress fund supporting those affected and their families has been established by several community organizations in Miami.
How many people are counted
Miami officials have reported 120 people. Charles Burkett, Mayor of Surfside, said 11 people received medical treatment at the site within hours of the collapse. Two were sent to hospital, where one later died. Three bodies were found in the rubble on Thursday, bringing the official death toll to four on Friday morning.
What we know about the building
Champlain Towers South Condo was built in 1981. The building had 12 stories and had 136 units. Firefighters estimate that 55 units in the building’s northeast corridor have collapsed. The building contained one to three bedroom units priced from $ 295,000 to $ 980,000. A four-bedroom penthouse in the apartment has sold for nearly $ 2.9 million, according to CNN.
While it will likely take some time for authorities to investigate the cause of the collapse, a study published in 2020 found that the building was sinking as early as the 1990s.
” I watched [the building] this morning and I said, ‘Oh my God.’ We detected this, ”Shimon Wdowinski, professor at Florida International University, told USA Today.
The building was also subject to electrical and structural inspections as part of a certification process that takes place every 40 years. Surfside Town Commissioner Eliana Salzhauer told USA Today that the town has not been made aware of any serious complaints about the building.