Surfside condo collapse: Video shows federal probe in action

Engineers with the National Institute of Standards and Technology say the work they are seen doing at the site of the collapsed Miami-area condominium will help them determine what went wrong.

SURFSIDE, Fla. – New video shows the federal investigation underway into what caused a portion of Champlain Towers South to collapse on June 24.

The footage shows portions of the building preserved and tagged for evidence by engineers with the National Institute of Standards and Technology, which investigates building failures.

“[It will] help us determine what we see as the probable collapse mechanism that happened here,” said Christopher Segura, a NIST research structural engineer.

That includes engineers evaluating the strength and quality of concrete columns. So far, the research laboratory says it has collected more than 200 building elements, including beams and pieces of the slab.

Meanwhile, efforts to identify recovered victims continue. Miami-Dade police on Friday said the body of 79-year-old Maria Popa Radulescu was recovered a week earlier. Her husband was also killed in the tragedy.


And in a Miami-Dade courtroom Friday morning, it was clear that there remains no consensus among families on what should become of the site.

“Some people want it sold and the proceeds immediately distributed, some want to rebuild on the property. And some believe this is hallowed ground and that it should be forever a memorial,” said court-appointed receiver Michael Goldberg.

The next court hearing is scheduled for next week.

“My only message from the families is let’s slow this down let’s listen to what the families are trying to say,” Surfside Mayor Charles Burkett said. “Let’s try to get some consensus and let’s not rush to do anything that’s going to be a permanent solution for a problem that is still unfolding that we don’t know exactly how it is going to pan out.”

About the Author:

Christina returned to Local 10 in 2019 as a reporter after covering Hurricane Dorian for the station. She is an Edward R. Murrow Award-winning journalist and previously earned an Emmy Award while at WPLG for her investigative consumer protection segment "Call Christina."