Unnerving footage from inside the Miami condo that collapsed shows the seconds before the 12-story building fell and reveals residents would have had no time to react.
The 13-second video posted on Twitter shows debris falling in one of the apartments before the footage shakes and the video shuts off.
Officially, one woman has been confirmed dead and 11 injured after the Champlain Towers South beachfront building collapsed at about 1:30am on Thursday in Miami’s Surfside neighborhood.
But there are still 99 people missing, so the death total could certainly climb. Hundreds of rescue crews are searching through tons of rubble while desperate families wait for news of any survivors.
The Twitter user who posted the video – @_rosie santana – said in the tweet that she’s a resident of one of the condos.
‘This is a video from my camera footage inside from the start of the collapse until the lose (sic) of connection (I was away from the building today). Towards the end, you hear the structure failing,’ she tweeted.
Thirty-five people were rescued from the damaged building including a young boy, who was photographed being pulled from the rubble in the early stages of the rescue operation. Two of those people, including the woman who has since died, were taken to hospital.
Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said during a press conference shortly before 5pm that 102 people have been accounted for and are safe.
In her brief comments she said there’s still no official cause of the collapse.
Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who represents Surfside, Florida, where the condominium collapsed, called for ‘whole of government… response,’ and said she has already coordinated with the White House for federal assistance, CNN reported around 5:30pm.
‘My responsibility is to make sure there can be no daylight between federal, state and local governments and ensuring we have the assistance of the federal government to make sure our community has the resources it needs,’ she said.
Officials said the building, built in 1981, was going through a recertification process and that engineers had been hired to complete electrical and structural repairs.
Experts who had studied the building as recently as last year said the building was unstable and had been sinking since the 1990s.
Meanwhile, the Miami-Dade Urban Search and Rescue team, which is famous for its life-saving responses to massive disasters including 9/11, the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, several hurricanes, among others, is leading the rescue efforts.
Rescue teams have been going through the rubble in groups of 10 to 12 at a time with dogs and other equipment as they trawl the wreckage for any survivors.
The president of Paraguay’s sister-in-law and her family, as well as a celebrity plastic surgeon from Argentina are among those still missing.
Sophia López Moreira, her husband Luis Pettengill and their three young children are still missing, Paraguay’s foreign ministry confirmed.
Moreira is the sister of President Mario Abdo Benítez’s wife Silvana. The family owned a condo in the building.
Also missing is a famed Argentinian plastic surgeon, his partner, and their newly-adopted six year-old daughter.