Family members at the missing place where the Florida apartment collapsed
Surfside, Florida. -The family of the missing person visited the site where the Florida apartment building collapsed on Sunday. Rescuers kept digging up the rubble and hoped that someone could live somewhere under the broken concrete and twisted metal.
The death toll has only increased by 4, and a total of 9 deaths have been confirmed. On Sunday night, the police confirmed that the four latest victims were 74-year-old Christina Beatriz Elvira; Luis Bermudez, 26; Leon Oliwkowicz, 80 ; And Anna Ortiz, 46 years old.
After nearly four days of search and rescue work, more than 150 people are still missing in Surfside. Since Thursday, a few hours after the collapse, no one has been rescued from the pile.
Some families had hoped that their visit would allow them to yell at relatives who might be buried deep in the garbage.
The bus took several groups of relatives to a place where they could see the garbage dump and rescuers at work. When the relatives returned to a nearby hotel, several people stopped to hug as they got out of the car. The others walked slowly back to the hotel door arm in arm.
“We are just waiting for the answer. This is what we want,” said Dianne Ohayon, her parents Myriam and Arnie Notkin both in the building. “It’s hard to get through these long days. We haven’t got any answers yet.”
The Israeli Minister of Diaspora Affairs, Nachman Shai, who visited with his family, led a humanitarian delegation to Surfside, which included several Israeli experts engaged in search and rescue operations. He said that experts told him in some cases that survivors were found after 100 hours or more.
“So don’t lose hope, that’s what I want to say. But everyone understands that the longer the time, the less likely it is to find someone alive,” he said.
“If you watch the scene, you will know that it is almost impossible to find people alive,” Shai added. “But you never know. Sometimes miracles happen, do you know? We Jews believe in miracles.”
Rescuers tried to reassure their families that they are doing their best to find missing relatives, but the staff said they need to work carefully to find the survivors with the best chance.
Some relatives are frustrated with the pace of rescue work.
“My daughter is 26 years old and in good health. She can leave there,” a mother told rescuers during a meeting with her family on the weekend. Instagram user Abigail Pereira (Abigail Pereira) posted a video of the meeting.
“It’s not enough,” the mother continued, and her relatives urged the authorities to bring in experts from other countries to help. “Imagine if your children were there.”
On Sunday, dozens of rescuers stayed on the huge pile of rubble in search of survivors, but so far only corpses and human remains have been found.
In a meeting with his family on Saturday night, Miami-Dade Assistant Fire Chief Raide Jadallah explained why he could not answer their repeated questions about how many victims they had found. People groaned and cried.
According to a video posted on Instagram, Jadala said: “We are not necessarily looking for victims, okay? We are looking for human remains.”
He noticed that the 12-story crepes had collapsed. It had broken into a pile of rubble that could be measured in feet. He said these conditions frustrated the crew looking for survivors.
Every time the staff found the remains, they would clean the area and remove the remains. Jadallah said that they worked with a rabbi to ensure that any religious ceremonies were performed correctly.
Officials said that if staff find any “cultural relics”, such as documents, pictures or money, they will hand them to the police.
Alan Kominsky, head of the Miami-Dade Fire and Rescue Department, said they have hope of finding people alive, but they must be slow and methodical.
“The debris field is scattered everywhere, and it is very compact, very compact,” he said.
The debris must be stable and supported as it moves.
“If there are spaces, we want to make sure to give all of our survivors the possibility. That’s why we can’t just enter and move things irregularly, because this can have the worst results,” he said.
When meeting with the authorities, the family repeatedly urged rescuers to do more work. Someone asked them why they couldn’t use crane surgery to remove the largest cement block in an attempt to find the larger gaps where survivors might be found.
Maggie Castro of the Fire and Rescue Agency replied: “We can’t easily remove the huge debris with surgery.”
“They are not large pieces. The fragments are broken, and they are held together by steel bars that are part of the building. So if we try to lift that piece, even with care, those broken fragments may fall off the floor to the side and disturb the pile,” Castro said.
She said that they tried to cut the rebar at key locations and remove large pieces of rebar, but they had to remove them in a way that nothing would fall onto the pile.
“We are doing it layer by layer,” Castro said. “It won’t stop. It’s a whole day. A whole night.”
Rescuers swept the mounds with dogs trained to sniff out humans.
Spec Ops Group CEO Adrian Garulay said they also used microwave radar equipment developed by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the Department of Homeland Security, which can “see through” solid concrete up to 8 inches (20 cm). This suitcase-sized device can detect human breathing and heartbeat, and was deployed by a seven-person search and rescue team from the Jewish community in Mexico on Sunday.
Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava (Daniella Levine Cava) said that six to eight teams are actively searching at any time, and hundreds of players are on standby at any time, ready to rotate. She said that since Thursday, the team has been working around the clock and has never lacked personnel.
The rescue team also cooperates with engineers and sonar to ensure the safety of rescuers.
On Saturday night, the crew dug a trench 125 feet long, 20 feet wide, and 40 feet deep (38 meters long, 6 meters wide, and 12 meters deep), which she said enabled them to find more dead bodies and humans. remains.
Earl Tilton, who runs a search and rescue consulting company in North Carolina, said that rushing into the rubble without careful planning and execution would harm or kill rescuers and the people they are trying to save. Tilton, who runs Lodestar Professional Services in North Carolina, said. Hendersonville, North Carolina.
“I understand my family’s concerns about this. If it is my family, I hope everyone there will pull the rubble away as quickly as possible,” Tilton said. “But moving the wrong piece at the wrong time may cause it to fall on them and crush them.”
Tilton said that in past urban rescues, rescuers found survivors a week after the initial disaster.
The mayor of Miami-Dade said on Sunday that rescuers had found four other bodies, which were found earlier, bringing the number of people unaccounted for to 152.
Authorities are collecting DNA samples from family members to help identification. Late Saturday, the four victims were identified as Stacie Dawn Fang, 54; Antonio Lozano, 83; Gladys Lozano, 79; and Manuel Lafon, 54 year old.
Associated Press writer Freida Frisaro of Fort Lauderdale, Bobby Caina Calvan of Tallahassee, and others from across the United States contributed to this report.