Death toll in Florida building collapse reaches 94

Miami: The confirmed death toll in the partial collapse of a 12-storey residential building in Surfside, Florida, has increased to 94 as rescuers continue the search for more bodies in the rubble, Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said.

Of the 94 victims, 83 have been identified and 80 families of the deceased have been notified, Levine Cava said while addressing reporters on Monday.

She said 22 people remain “potentially unaccounted” for, with 222 people accounted for, adding that as “identification become more difficult as time goes on”, the numbers are fluid and will continue to change.

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Those recently identified include three-year-old Luis Vicente Pettengill Lopez Moreira III, the youngest victim known so far who was the son of Sophia Lopez Moreira, the sister of Paraguayan First Lady Silvana Lopez Moreira.

Living in Champlain Towers South at the time of the building’s collapse in the early hours on June 24, Sophia Lopez Moreira and her husband, Luis Pettengill, were confirmed dead and identified in an earlier release.

In addition to their son, the couple’s two daughters,- aged six and nine, and the family nanny also died in the tragedy.

The entire family have been identified.

Paraguayan President Mario Abdo Benitez arrived in the US on July 9 to grapple with the loss of his family members.

Ongoing investigations trying to establish the cause of the collapse have yielded little breakthrough so far, as early results of a probe into Champlain Towers North, a sister building of the ill-fated condo that has a substantially similar structure, came back showing “the concrete strength is very good”, according to Surfside Mayor Charles Burkett.

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