The death toll in the partial collapse of a 12-story residential building in the beachside town of Surfside, southeastern U.S. state Florida, has risen to ten as one more body was found in ongoing search and rescue, authorities said on Monday. There are at least 151 people missing after the building collapse. Search and rescue teams are racing to find survivors.
Rescuers continue to look for survivors even though no one has been found alive since hours after Thursday's collapse, said Miami-Dade mayor. On Sunday more dead bodies were recovered which took the total death count to 9.
Authorities have identified eight of the nine people confirmed to have died after the collapse of a 12-story beachfront condominium in Florida.
Police said they identified the remains of Leon and Christina Oliwkowicz, an elderly couple from Venezuela with ties to Jewish communities in Florida and Chicago. They also found the bodies of Luis Bermudez, a young man with muscular dystrophy, and his mother Ana Ortiz, who were from Puerto Rico.
One victim passed away in the hospital, and we've recovered eight more victims on-site, so I am confirming today that the death toll is at nine," the mayor had said on Sunday.
Meanwhile, the City of Miami Beach has declared a state of emergency in the wake of the incident. US President Joe Biden, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, and Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava have issued emergency declarations as well. Family members of people who died or are still missing in the collapse in Surfside were taken to the site at Champlain Towers South Sunday, according to Cava's office.
A large oceanfront condo building near Miami Beach partially collapsed on Thursday, prompting a massive search-and-rescue response as many people were reported missing.
A 2020 study conducted by Shimon Wdowinski, a professor in the department of earth and environment at Florida International University, found that the building had been sinking since the 1990s, according to US media.