WASHINGTON: At least three people died, 12 others were injured, and nearly 100 people were possibly missing after a 12-story residential building partially collapsed in Miami-Dade County in the southeastern US state of Florida early Thursday, local media reported.
The ABC News and local newspaper Miami Herald put the number of people who were missing at 99.
Reports said at least 12 people were injured in the incident, two of them in critical condition.
It was unclear exactly how many residents were in the building when the incident happened.
Surfside officials said they could not confirm any number of missing people, but the situation looked dire.
The Miami-Dade Fire Rescue received a call at about 1:30 a.m. local time about the partial collapse of the Champlain Towers South condominium in the beachside town of Surfside, about 6 miles north of Miami Beach.
So far at least 35 people trapped in the building and two others from beneath the rubble have been rescued, Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Assistant Chief Raide Jadallah said.
Video footage from the scene showed a large section of the building collapsed into a pile of rubble, and a young boy was pulled alive from the rubble.
“It’s unimaginable,” Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said. “It’s a terrible, terrible nightmare that we have here on Surfside.”
The oceanfront condominium, built in 1981, has 136 units and approximately 55 of them collapsed on the northeast corridor, according to Jadallah.
Xinhua News Agency