Dozens of families continued to cling to hope, as rescue teams combed the rubble on Friday, searching for the survivors of the 159 people still missing after the collapse of an apartment building in the US state of Florida.
The death toll from the disaster has reached 4 so far, and that number is sure to rise as rescuers battle smoke, fires and the precarious state of debris while working in the sweltering South Florida heat.
Although the scene looked bleak with the floors of the high-rise building stacked on top of each other, rescuers continued to search through the rubble, hoping that pockets had formed, giving any potential survivors air to breathe.
“We have hope, because that’s what our search and rescue team is telling us they have,” Miami-Dade Mayor Daniela Levine Cava said at a news conference.
She added that the teams worked with the help of dogs, cameras and sensors on site in rotation, with only a limited number allowed to work at any one time, to prevent further collapse.
Rescue teams have arrived from Mexico and Israel to help relieve the burden of local crews.
The disaster occurred in the early hours of last Thursday morning, when many were asleep when a large part of the high-rise building, which is 40 years old, collapsed.