'It almost resembles the Trade Center': First responder describes Surfside condo collapse

Dispatch recordings capture the immediate responses, reactions of several first responders following the catastrophic collapse

By Janelle Foskett

Audio recordings released in the days after the catastrophic collapse of the Champlain Towers condo building in Surfside, Florida, capture the efforts made by first responders moments after the incident.

"It almost resembles the Trade Center," one first responder tells Dispatch on the Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Fireground channel, as recorded via Broadcastify.

The first responder further describes the scene: "We have a 13-story building with most of the building gone. This is going to be a high priority. We're going to need TRTs [technical rescue teams]. We're going to need a full assignment on this. Everybody. ... A quarter of the building that's left -- we still have people standing upstairs that still need to be evacuated. I see many people on their balconies. The building is gone. ... Some people are evacuating saying it sounded like a bomb."

Another first responder cautions, "The building is at risk of further collapse."

The death toll rose to 12 on Tuesday, and the number of people unaccounted for is now 149, said Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava.

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