Florida leadership travels to Surfside after partial building collapse

Gov. Ron DeSantis brought his team to Surfside on Thursday after a partial building collapse shortly before 2 a.m. in Miami-Dade County’s town of Surfside.

Sen. Marco Rubio and Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz were in Surfside in time for an afternoon news conference.

“This is a tragedy without precedent in the United States of America,” Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz said. “The devastation that I witnessed today is the likes of which I have never seen.”

During a speech, President Joe Biden said the federal government was ready to help Surfside deal with the tragedy. First Lady Jill Biden also made a public statement saying her heart was with the families of the residents of the Champlain Towers South.

The White House released a statement saying in part, “All of our hearts go out to the family and friends who have lost their beloved during this horrific incident, as well as to the families who wait in anguish as search-and-rescue teams assess and work through the devastation.”

President Joe Biden spoke to Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava Thursday and said that FEMA is ready to help following Thursday morning’s partial building collapse in Surfside.

Rubio praised the search-and-rescue teams who were had at work under the pancaked concrete at 8777 Collins Ave. Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said there were 102 survivors and 99 people who were unaccounted for.

“It’s a dark and tragic day,” Rubio said. “From it, we continue to pray for some miracles, and we are inspired by the men and women, the heroes, who are out there right now risking their lives to hopefully rescue people.”

About the Authors:

Ben Kennedy is an Emmy Award-winning Washington Bureau Chief for Local 10 News.

The Emmy Award-winning journalist joined the Local 10 News team in 2013. She wrote for the Miami Herald for more than 9 years and won a Green Eyeshade Award.