- Gov. Ron DeSantis said that residents of the sister building that partially collapse on Thursday will “potentially” be evacuated.
- DeSantis said the mayor would have to make that decision.
- The collapse of 12-story condo in Miami resulted in four deaths and more than 150 people unaccounted for.
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Gov. Ron DeSantis said that officials “are considering potentially evacuating” the residents of the sister building to the 12 story high-rise condominium that partially collapsed earlier this week in the town of Surfside in Miami, Florida.
Officials said that at least five people have died from the collapse at The Champlain Towers South Condo on Thursday, and 159 remain unaccounted for. An inspection report from 2018 revealed evidence of “major structural damage” to the property. And in 2015, a resident filed a lawsuit regarding the maintenance of one of the building’s outer walls, as Insider’s Mia Jankowicz reported.
During a media briefing on Saturday, a reporter asked DeSantis that in light of the concern about the structure of the building that crumbled, “would you feel safe going to sleep tonight if you were in the sister building?”
“There’s a sister building basically right down the street …it was built at the same time with the same designer, so they are looking at working with them. And I know they are considering potentially evacuating them, but that’s something that ultimately the mayor is going to have to make the call on,” DeSantis responded.
“I don’t know if there’s indications that there’s any problems with that building, but just given the similarities, given the same age, they think that that may be something, so I think he may have an announcement on that today,” he added.
In a statement to The Hill, Surfside Communications Director Malarie Dauginikas said officials are working with experts to determine if action is necessary.
“Should the decision be made to evacuate residents from this tower, we will work directly with FEMA and the Red Cross to ensure all arrangements are made to ensure their safety and make them comfortable,” Dauginikas told the Hill.
On Friday, the White House said President Joe Biden issued an emergency declaration for Florida which “authorizes the Department of Homeland Security, FEMA, to coordinate all disaster relief efforts.”
Miami-Dade County Daniella Levine Cava said that although the fire has spread at the site of the building, rescue efforts and an investigation are still underway. Cava added that she is directing an audit “of all of the buildings at the 40-year point and beyond.”
“We want to make sure that every building has completed their re-certification process, and we want to do it swiftly to remediate any issues that may have been identified in that process,” Cava said at the media briefing. “We’re going to conduct this audit within the next 30 days, and we are beginning right now.”