12th July, 2021
The death toll in the collapse of a Miami-area condominium rose to 90 on Sunday from 86, as crews continued their grim search for human remains in the wreckage.
Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said another 31 people were still “potentially unaccounted for.”
Levine Cava spoke at a briefing.
While many are feared dead in the concrete and steel rubble of the 12-story oceanfront building in Surfside that partially collapsed in the early morning hours of June 24, some of the missing have been discovered through detective work, she said.
The “unaccounted for” list shrank by 12 from Saturday, even as only four additional bodies were discovered.
“Our detectives are continuing to make progress in their audit and their diligent efforts of researching, verifying all reports on the unaccounted list and working with the families to open missing person police reports,” Levine Cava said.
With no survivors rescued from the ruins since the first few hours after the collapse, officials last week declared that their search effort had switched from rescue to recovery.
Working around the clock with only a few safety-related pauses, Levine Cava said, workers have removed 14 million pounds (6,350 tonnes) of concrete and debris from the site.
As search teams sift gingerly through the wreckage, they have kept an eye out for personal items that are being cataloged and returned to victims’ families, Burkett said.
“The work is still so delicate that we’ve even found unbroken wine bottles in the rubble and recovered them,” he added.
Investigators have not determined what caused part of the 40-year-old Champlain Towers South to fall apart without warning.