Florida [US], June 25 (ANI): Several people from Latin American countries were reported missing following building collapse in Surfside, Florida on early Thursday (local time).
Authorities from several countries in Latin America have confirmed that nationals from their respective countries resided or were in the building in Florida, reported CNN.
Six nationals are missing from Paraguay, including Paraguayan First Lady Silvana Lopez Moreira's sister, brother-in-law and their three children.
Also missing are six Colombian nationals, six Venezuelan nationals, nine Argentinian and three Uruguayan nationals, reported CNN.
Meanwhile, rescue efforts continue following the partial collapse of a building. Rescue crews are using dogs, listening devices, and cameras for survivors, reported CNN.
At least 99 people are unaccounted after the building collapsed. CNN also reported that one person was killed and at least 11 were injured.
Thirty-seven people were pulled out of the rubble following the building collapse, Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Assistant Fire Chief Ray Jadallah said.
The mayor of Miami-Dade county, Daniella Levine Cava, said the building is 12 stories and had more than 130 units. Search and rescue operations will continue throughout the night at the collapsed Champlain Towers condo building, Cava said.
Cava said there are 102 people who have been accounted for following the partial building collapse. "I want to give you a top number, very encouraging, 102 people have been accounted for. That's double what we were able to report last time," Cava said at a news conference.
"One hundred and two people from the towers, their locations are known and they are safe," said Cava.
The mayor said there are still at least 99 people who are unaccounted for.
Structural engineers will be involved in the investigation as well as the city of Surfside and the fire department, said Cava. According to the Miami-Dade County Police Department, they will investigate the incident after search and rescue operations are completed.
Shimon Wdowinski, a professor with Florida International University's Institute of Environment, told CNN he determined in a study last year that the Champlain Towers South condo showed signs of sinking in the 1990s. The condo had a subsidence rate of about two millimeters a year from 1993 to 1999, according to his study.
While Wdowinski said that this sinking alone would likely not cause the condo's collapse, he said it could be a contributing factor. "If one part of the building moves with respect to the other, that could cause some tension and cracks," he explained.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis issued an executive order to provide assistance for the families impacted by the collapse. The state of emergency declaration will allow all necessary resources to be diverted to the area including law enforcement and other emergency personnel, the order said.
President Joe Biden said that federal resources, including assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, are "ready to go" to respond to the collapse.
Charles Kesl, the commissioner of Surfside, said he has hope that more people can be rescued from the rubble of the partially collapsed building in his community, but "realistically, I'm not sure how many or if anyone will be recovered and found alive". (ANI)