Relief authorities in Miami-Dade, Florida, on Wednesday concluded searches for survivors of a building collapse that killed 54 people, according to the latest tally, with 86 reported missing.
“It is with great sadness that I announce the extremely difficult decision to move from the rescue and search for survivors stage to the assembly stage [de cadáveres]’,” said the county mayor, Daniela Levine Cava.
Authorities still face the problem of identifying bodies, having so far admitted to only 32 of the victims of the South Champlain Towers collapse two weeks ago.
American rescuers, aided by Mexicans and Israelis, searched for survivors for 14 days, uninterrupted, day and night, in the face of adverse weather conditions caused by Storm Elsa, with strong winds and torrential rain arriving in Florida over the weekend.
Except for a teen found on the day of the disaster, no other survivors have been found.
The collapse of the building occurred on June 24 and was recorded on videotape showing, according to the photos, the collapse of the center of the building, which consists of three adjacent towers, falling first.
Two reports, carried out in 2018 and 2020, noted “significant structural damage” to the Champlain Towers and “cracks in the basement” of the building, with recommendations for work to be carried out.
Daniela Levine Cava has made statements to ensure that the municipal government reviews building safety issues and makes recommendations “to ensure that a tragedy like this never happens” again.