SURFSIDE, FL – Breaking reports state that a Surfside, Florida high-rise apartment condominium building near Miami Beach has partially collapsed early Thursday morning, with authorities saying that at least one person has been killed and many other people injured.
Officials report having received calls about the collapse of the 12-story building – which has 136 units – at approximately 1:30 a.m. eastern time; 55 units were located in the section of the complex that collapsed. It is currently unknown how many people are missing, but authorities report having pulled at least 35 injured people out of the rubble and that one person has been confirmed dead at this point in time.
The collapse of the building, located at 88th Street and Collins Avenue, was caught on surveillance video, which can be viewed here. The shocking collapse, which saw a huge section of the building literally just fall in on itself without warning, distributed a huge cloud of debris throughout the surrounding neighborhood, reports say.
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Surfside Commissioner Eliana Salzhauer stated that it may be some time before search and rescue operations uncover the total number of dead and injured from the tragic incident.
“I mean, could be weeks until we really know who is under the rubble, who survived, who didn’t survive,” she said. “There’s a lot of people unaccounted for, lot of families very concerned.”
Surfside Mayor Charles Burkett described the collapse as “beyond crazy.”
“This doesn’t happen in first world countries, buildings just don’t fall down like this,” he said. “This is inexplicable. We just don’t have any answers right now, but we will get them.”
Burkett said that officials currently do not yet know of the cause of the collapse, and confirmed that there were “quite a few” people in the building when it took place.
“I mean it looks like a bomb went off, but we’re pretty sure a bomb didn’t go off,” he said, adding that search dogs were currently not finding any survivors, which he stated was “a great disappointment.”
At the time of publication, 99 people were unaccounted for.