Home World News One year after the collapse of Miami: pain, memories and many doubts

One year after the collapse of Miami: pain, memories and many doubts

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One year after the collapse of Miami: pain, memories and many doubts

One year after the collapse of Miami: pain, memories and many doubts

On June 24, 2021, part of a residential tower collapsed in Surfside, Florida. There were 98 deaths. Photo: AFP

A year after the partial collapse of a condominium in Surfside, Florida, in which 98 people have died, there are still many injuries to be closed, multimillion-dollar compensation and years of work to solve the big question: what caused the tragedy?

Two of the 98 victims, many of them Argentinian and from other Latin American countries, were Miguel Pazos, 56, and his daughter, Michelle, 25.

Carlos Pazos, grandfather of the family, was in Havana, Cuba, where he lives, when he learned of the “bad luck” that occurred on June 24, 2021 in the 12-story building in this city near Miami Beach.

So far he has not been able to travel to the United States to greet his son and granddaughter.

“No one could ever have imagined such an end” for them, he complained in statements to the EFE agency in Havana about the death of his son. He was a “man who turned the world upside down,” he says, remembering that night when he was in the Champlain Building in Surfside with her daughter, visiting from Canada, where she lived with her mother and brother.

The names of the 98 killed in the Champlain Tower collapse in Surfside, Florida, on a screen reminiscent of the tragedy a year later.  Photo: AFP

The names of the 98 killed in the Champlain Tower collapse in Surfside, Florida, on a screen reminiscent of the tragedy a year later. Photo: AFP

A year after the building collapsed, the man, who was co-chair of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW), he wants answers.

“What were the reasons, the real causes? And on this there is a strange and obviously very unpleasant silence for the relatives of the victims, especially now, since there is no remedy from the point of view of their life, but for itself, “said the Cuban doctor.

no reply

Like him, many relatives and victims of the collapse ask the authorities for explanationseven if the answers will take some time to arrive.

This was explained to EFE by the co-director of investigations carried out by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Judith Mitrani-Reiser, who worked two months from sunrise to sunset on the remains of the building, which was completely demolished for weeks after the its partial collapse.

This expert, who came to Miami from Cuba when she was a little girl, understands the impatience of relatives, but explains that Surfside’s is one of the “most difficult and complex” investigations. they faced.

“What is particularly unusual and inspiring is the age of the structure in which it collapsed and the fact that there is no clear initial event (which caused the collapse), even after a year of investigation,” explains an investigator of the agency that worked on disasters such as the attacks on the Twin Towers in New York on September 11, 2001.

While they still hold “more than two dozen hypotheses” of what happened, this summer the second part of the investigations will begin, in which they will subject the collected remains of the building to physical and chemical tests. But he explains that “there is no clear initial event as to why the structure remained standing and then partially collapsed after 40 years.”

This was indicated by Mitrani-Reiser, co-director of investigations with Glenn Bell the “most intense” phase of the survey will end at the end of September 2023 and NIST’s final report and recommendations will be published one year later.

The destruction of the Surfside building, which collapsed a year ago.  Photo: AFP

The destruction of the Surfside building, which collapsed a year ago. Photo: AFP

Multi-million dollar compensation

Carlos, 85, says the only thing he wants in life is for the United States to give him a visa that allows him to travel to Miami to spend a few days with his children and grandchildren and go with them to the place where Miguel and Michelle died, and where her ashes rest.

That, nothing more. None of the multimillion dollar compensation that has already been approved for victims: “Give that to my nephew. I just want to get a visa.”

The families of the victims of the palace have already arrived at agreement with insurers for $ 997 million to close one of the pending judicial issues, such as the ongoing manslaughter lawsuits.

Champlain Towers South, built in 1981, was in the midst of a process known as “recertification,” which involves a overhaul of the structures and the electrical systems required by law for buildings over 40 years old.

giveaways

For lack of a visa, Carlos Pazos will not be able to be this Friday with the rest of his family at the scene of the tragedy to honor the memory of the victims of the partial collapse of the 12-story building.

The first public event will be at 1:22 am on Friday morning (local time), the time the building collapsed a year ago. At that moment they will light a commemorative torch that will remain lit for three weeks, the same that the authorities used to recover the body of the latest victim.

The following day there will be an official tribute to the victims, an act in which the first lady of the United States, Jill Biden, will participate, and which is expected to be attended by family members, staff of the rescue teams and local authorities.

Source: EFE

CB

Source: Clarin

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