Miami condo complex suddenly collapses and families want answers.
Champlain Towers South, a Miami, Florida condo complex, suddenly collapsed with many of the residents inside. Some made it out, while others are still missing amongst the debris. Now, the residents and their families are questioning why the complex unexpectedly came tumbling to the ground, and lawsuits are being filed against the association on their behalf.
Raysa Rodriguez left a distressing voicemail on the brother’s phone just moments after Champlain Towers South came crashing down. She yelled in a panic, “The whole entire building is gone!” Luckily, Rodriguez escaped alive and is now pursuing a lawsuit against the condo association.
“I want the people to grieve, but a lawsuit needs to be filed that’s why we filed it,” said Adam Moskowitz, who represents her in a class action.
Rodriguez lived on the ninth floor and reported her friends, Dick Augustine and Elaine Sabino, who lived one floor above, were still missing. Her lawsuit is one of at least four that have been filed since the collapse.
“The first thing that they want to know is why did this happen and how do we prevent it from happening again,” said attorney Robert Mongeluzzi, who represents the family of Harry Rosenberg, another Champlain Towers resident, still missing. Rosenberg lived on the second floor, and his daughter and son-in-law were in the condo with him at the time.
“The families have not had a voice or set of eyes in that process at all,” Mongeluzzi added.
The portion of the condo complex that was still standing after the tragedy was leveled in a controlled explosion meant to allow search and rescue crews to continue their efforts to find missing residents inside at the time. Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said the demolition was “executed exactly as planned and left officials optimistic about the safely sifting through the rubble. There is hope that there are voids that will allow us to continue the search and rescue operation.”
Governor Ron DeSantis added, “Concerns about the remaining part of the building left few options but demolition. Residents of the building who survived fled with whatever they had with them and had not been permitted to enter the teetering structure. Passports, wedding rings, cherished photos were left behind. At the end of the day, that building is too unsafe to let people go back in. I know there’s a lot of people who were able to get out, fortunately, who have things there. We’re very sensitive to that. But I don’t think that there’s any way you could let someone go back up into that building given the shape that it’s in now.”
A spokesperson for the Champlain Towers South Condominium Association responded to the litigation, “While we cannot comment on pending litigation, our focus remains on caring for our friends and neighbors during this difficult time. We continue to work with city, state, and local officials in their search and recovery efforts, and to understand the causes of this tragedy. Our profound thanks go out to all of the emergency rescue personnel – professionals and volunteers alike – for their tireless efforts.”