THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Below is the original story by AP.
SURFSIDE (Fla.) -- On Saturday, a top Miami-Dade fire officer told relatives of those missing in the rubble from a fallen condo building that demolition crews were planning to tear it down on Sunday.
Over the last week, fears have grown that the structure may collapse on its own. This could pose a danger to the crews below and make it more difficult to search for the victims.
During a briefing, Fire Rescue Assistant Fire Chief Jadallah assured family members that the building would soon be down. Tomorrow morning, first thing.
He did warn that there could be "hiccups." The afternoon meeting will finish the details of demolition. This can be dangerous as explosives experts must enter the building to install explosives.
The search for the missing section was halted because of concerns that it might fall. Monitors detected shifts in the early hours of Thursday morning, prompting a 15-hour suspension until engineers found the site safe enough to resume the search.
Jadallah stated that the remains of the demolished building will be removed as soon as possible with the intention of allowing rescuers to gain access to the area of the garage that is the focus of the search. This access could help officials see the potential voids in the rubble, and possibly shelter survivors.
Since the initial hours following the June 24th collapse, no one has been saved. Concerns are also raised by Hurricane Elsa approaching from the Caribbean Sea. Strong winds could be possible in South Florida on Sunday or Monday, further destabilizing the towers.
22 people died in the accident that resulted from the collapse of the condo building on June 24, which occurred at 2:45 AM. After eliminating duplicate names, officials reduced the number of people still missing to 126. Some residents who reported being missing were found safe.
Officials hope that the search operations will not be suspended for too long after the demolition of this building. Some families requested to be allowed back into the building to retrieve their personal belongings. However, this will not be permitted.
Gov. Ron DeSantis stressed the importance of bringing down the structure in a controlled manner before the storm arrives during Saturday's press conference.
The governor stated that Surfside has a building that is in danger of collapse and is structurally unstable. "If the building is torn down, it will protect our search-and-rescue teams."
He also declared an emergency in anticipation of the storm's arrival next week.