SURFSIDE, Fla. — Nine people have been confirmed dead in the Thursday condo high-rise collapse in Surfside as the search effort continues for the more than 150 people still unaccounted for.
First responders have built a massive trench where they found bodies. But officials say they did not find any air pockets.
Over the weekend, the death toll climbed with Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava confirming on Sunday that nine people have died.
Late Saturday, four of the victims were identified: Stacie Dawn Fang, 54; Antonio Lozano, 83; Gladys Lozano, 79; and Manuel LaFont, 54.
Family members were bused to the site on Sunday at Champlain Towers South. And dozens more families across South America are waiting to hear the fate of their loved ones.
At least 31 people from six different countries are believed to have been inside when the building fell.
Consulates are working to provide expedited visas and travel options, so relatives can travel to the site.
One survivor, who did not give their name, describes what it was like getting out.
“I was lucky. I feel because when the door that I was trying to open jammed, because all the weight of the concrete or vibration, I had to push it with all my force. And when it opened was already fire department that helping me to the escape. I witnessed fear and maybe the fear got me to stay alive,” the survivor shared.
Rescue officials are urging people to keep the hope alive, pointing out that survivors have been found after several days in similar circumstances.
It is the largest deployment of search and rescue crews in Florida during non-hurricane times.
Currently, there is no timeline for when this search and rescue mission will change to search and recovery.