Families of those missing in Florida condo collapse holding out hope for their loved ones

SURFSIDE, Fla. — As nearly 150 people remain missing after a south Florida condo building collapsed, their families are still hoping they will be found alive.

Channel 2 anchor Justin Wilfon traveled to south Florida where families tell him they’re growing anxious for answers about where their loved ones are.

“The families are frustrated. The families are sitting on the sidelines crying,” said Mike Silver, whose family is still missing.

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One of the biggest factors making the search more difficult for crews is the weather. When it hasn’t been oppressively hot since the building collapsed, it’s been pouring down rain, slowing down their efforts.

Silver told Wilfon his uncle and cousins are missing in the collapsed condo in Surfside. He said he went to the reunification center that has been set up down the street in search of answers.

“The reality is we’re 40 hours later. The heat is rough here. They’re trapped under there. Hopefully there’s still survivors,” he said.

Crews also brought in heavy machinery Friday to make lifting and moving the debris easier. All of which is being done meticulously with the hope that crews can still find trapped survivors.

“Absolutely. I have hope,” Silver said. “There are air pockets. This is a concrete building. When you get close, which I’ve been able to, you see that there are a lot of gaps, a lot of air pockets. The concrete is not just pancaked, there are multiple directions. There are absolutely survivors; there’s no question about it. I hope it’s my family, and I hope it’s everybody.”

Silver knows crews are working hard, but wants to see the search move faster.

“They deserve the chance to survive. Right now, they’re not being given the real chance to survive,” he said.

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Some families have started to provide DNA to try and match it with victims who have been found at the scene.

Antonio and Sergio Lozano’s parents were inside their 10th floor condo at the Champlain Towers when the building collapsed early Thursday morning.

“That night around 1:20 in the morning, my brother heard a really loud noise,” the brothers told Wilfon. “I thought it was like a tornado or something. And I went out to pick up the patio furniture to bring it in and I open the glass door and I look over and there was no apartment. There was no building.”

Sergio Lozano was in another building right next door.

“He said, ‘Mom and Dad are gone.’ And I said, ‘What do you mean they’re gone?’ He said, ‘Yeah, the building is not there,’” Antonio Lozano said.

The brothers stopped by the reunification center to give their DNA so crews can try and match it with victims found on the scene.

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They also just want answers as to why the building collapsed.

While investigators still work to determine those answers, crews have promised to search through the night for survivors.