Search of collapsed Miami building shifts from rescue to recovery

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Search Of Collapsed Miami Building Shifts From Rescue To Recovery
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By Terry Spencer, Associated Press

Eight more bodies have been recovered from the site of the collapsed Florida building, bringing the death toll to 54, Miami-Dade County’s mayor said.

Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said at a news conference that 33 of the dead have been identified and 86 people are still unaccounted for after the disaster.

Earlier, emergency workers gave up on any hope of finding survivors in the rubble, telling sobbing families that there was “no chance of life” as crews shifted their efforts to recovering more remains.


Momentos and flowers are seen displayed at the Surfside Wall of Hope & Memorial (Al Diaz/Miami Herald via AP)

The announcement followed increasingly sombre reports from emergency officials, who said they sought to prepare families for the worst.

Miami-Dade Assistant Fire Chief Raide Jadallah told families at a private briefing on Wednesday afternoon that crews would stop using rescue dogs and listening devices but would continue to search for remains.

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“Our sole responsibility at this point is to bring closure,” he said, as relatives cried in the background.


Search and rescue team members depart (Al Diaz/Miami Herald via AP)

For two weeks, rescue crews have looked for spaces in the rubble large enough to harbour survivors. But they now say the likelihood of finding anyone alive is almost nil.

“We noticed the stress, the force of the pressure of the walls and the floors just pretty much again sustained no chance of life,” Mr Jadallah said.

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