4 dead and 159 missing due to building collapse in Miami-Dade; risky search efforts continue

Aerial image of the collapsed building in Surfside, Miami-Dade County, where search and rescue efforts continue.

Photo: Joe Raedle / .

United States President Joe Biden stated a state of emergency for Florida this Friday in the wake of the collapse of a residential building in Surfside, which so far has left 4 dead and about 159 missing.

The executive action was announced by the White House this morning at about 12:30 am, after the governor of the state Ron DeSantis formally made the request.

It is expected that later today, the president will make public expressions about the incident, reported at about 1 am this Thursday.

A source associated with the discussion told CNN that DeSantis, a harsh critic of the Biden Administration, eventually agreed to make the request for the emergency declaration before pressure from local officials in Miami-Dade County.

The declaration opens the door for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and other agencies to release relief funds for those affected by the landslide.

FEMA staff will also join the search for possible survivors.

55 of the 136 apartments fell

At the moment, some 159 people remain missing and four were found dead in the rubble after the 12-story structure collapsed. Specifically, 55 of the 136 apartments in the building collapsed.

The northeast wing of the Champlain Towers building o a third of the building completely collapsed early on Thursday.

County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said hope remains to find people alive and the search through the rubble will continue despite the “extreme risk” it poses to rescuers.

Over 100 rescuers on the scene at Surfside

The . news agency reported that the 100+ rescuers on the scene They have worked shifts all night. Although they have not heard voices, they have sounds that would not necessarily be produced by humans but could be the result of the movement of accumulated materials. It is in these places where the most careful search is made, according to a Miami-Dade fire department spokesman.

In total, 102 people from the building have been located, according to the Miami-Dade mayor.

There is no information on the causes of the collapse

At the moment, the causes of the collapse have not been established, but it is known that the building was built in a swampy area.

The 136-apartment building located on the beachfront, was inaugurated in 1981 and has just passed a mandatory inspection for its 40 years.

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