Partially collapsed apartment block in Miami has been demolished


Partially collapsed apartment block in Miami has been demolished

The remaining section of a partially collapsed apartment block near Miami has been demolished over safety fears as a tropical storm approaches Florida.

On Sunday night, explosive charges were used to bring down the last standing part of Champlain Towers South, which had been evacuated.

On 24 June, part of the block suddenly collapsed. Twenty-four people are known to have died and 121 are still missing.

Crews resumed the search for victims within a few hours of the demolition.

They are now hoping to be able to get into the apartment block’s underground garage, which they could not access safely before, and get a clearer picture of any voids that may exist in the rubble.

No survivors have been pulled from the rubble at the site in Surfside since the first few hours after the structure’s collapse.

The demolition operation was brought forward after concerns were raised over the approaching Tropical Storm Elsa, which could reach Florida on Tuesday.

On Sunday, the town’s Mayor Charles Burkett said there was a danger that strong winds could bring down additional debris and endanger the lives of search crews.

He said demolition experts would be able to control how the structure fell, and that the explosion could “potentially open up a third of the pile [of rubble]” for emergency teams to access.

The existing rubble, meanwhile, was covered with a tarpaulin to protect it from any dust or debris caused by the collapse.

While no other buildings in the area were evacuated, nearby residents were advised to stay indoors and close their windows until at least two hours after the demolition.

Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said the controlled implosion went “exactly as planned”.

“I feel relief because this building was unstable. The building was hampering our search efforts,” she told the Associated Press.