NATIONAL NEWS

No deaths reported after rescuers rush to save residents from Iowa building collapse, officials say

May 29, 2023, 6:46 AM | Updated: 10:02 am

Onlookers watch as emergency crews work the scene of a partial building collapse on the 300 block o...

Onlookers watch as emergency crews work the scene of a partial building collapse on the 300 block of Main Street, Sunday, May 28, 2023, in Davenport, Iowa. (Nikos Frazier/Quad City Times via AP)

(Nikos Frazier/Quad City Times via AP)

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) — Firefighters and other first responders are being credited with saving lives – at great risk to their own safety – after a six-story apartment building in Iowa partially collapsed, authorities said Monday.

There were no confirmed fatalities and no known people still trapped the morning after a section of brick building in the eastern Iowa city of Davenport crashed to the ground. Mayor Mike Matson said members of the Davenport Fire Department and others went “literally into an unsafe building” to try to rescue residents.

“When something like this happens here, and tragedy strikes, our responders immediately do their work and their job and I can’t thank them enough,” Matson said at a news conference Monday.

Fire Chief Michael Carlsten said workers searched for survivors throughout the night and rescued one person from the six-story building — bringing the total number of people rescued by fire officials to eight. An additional 12 people were escorted out by fire crews when they first responded to the collapse on Sunday evening.

“No known individuals are trapped in that facility,” Carlsten said. Authorities have not released how many people were injured or provided details on the nature of their injuries. Carlsten did say that the person who was rescued overnight was in the hospital.

Rescue teams, including K-9 units, were inside the building all night.

Rescuers were called to the scene shortly before 5 p.m. Sunday. Carlsten said the back of the apartment complex collapsed and had separated from the building, which houses apartments on the upper floors and businesses on the ground level.

Authorities found a gas leak after the collapse, Carlsten said, while water also had leaked throughout the floors of the structure.

The stability of the building was still a concern.

Carlsten said officials were “currently finishing the rescue phase of our operation and soon it will become a recovery operations.”

The cause of the collapse was not immediately known.

Rich Oswald, City of Davenport director of development and neighborhood services, said at a news conference Sunday that work was being done on the building’s exterior at the time of the collapse.

Reports of bricks falling from the building earlier this week were part of that work and the building’s owner had a permit for the project, Oswald said.

The Quad-City Times reported Robert Robinson, a second-floor resident, had gone outside and returned as alarms went off in the building.

“When we started to go back in the lights went out,” he told the newspaper. “All of a sudden everybody started running out saying the building collapsed. I’m glad we came down when we did.”

Robinson and his girlfriend were able to take the elevator down just in time, he said.

“This is horrible,” he said. “We don’t have anywhere to go. Nothing to eat.”

Tadd Machovec, a Davenport contractor, told the newspaper he was inside putting up a support beam when the building came down.

Some people in the area said the building has had problems. City officials said Sunday that they had several complaints from residents about needed repairs.

“The tenants told us the building was going to collapse,” said Jennifer Smith, co-owner of Fourth Street Nutrition, which moved into the building this winter.

“It sounds bad, but we have been calling the city and giving complaints since December. Our bathroom caved in December,” she said.

Smith said water damage has been apparent since they moved into their space. Her fellow co-owner, Deonte Mack, said fire crews were in the building as recently as Thursday for an inspection.

The Quad-City Times reported the building is owned by Andrew Wold. A working phone number for Wold was not immediately available Sunday night and attempts to reach him for comment were unsuccessful.

The newspaper reported nearly 20 permits were filed in 2022 for building repairs, mainly for plumbing or electrical issues, according to the county assessor’s office.

There were 84 units in the building, a mixture of residential and commercial spaces, the mayor said.

In June 2021, 98 people died when a high-rise condominium near Miami Beach collapsed in the middle of the night.

The Champlain Towers South had a long history of maintenance problems, and shoddy construction techniques were used in the early 1980s. Other possible factors for the collapse include sea level rise caused by climate change and damage caused by saltwater intrusion.

KSL 5 TV Live

National News

Traffic moves on I-15 in Salt Lake City on Thursday, May 18, 2023. (Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)...

Bryan Mena, CNN

Americans are expected to splurge on travel this summer — again

Millions of Americans have taken to the skies, hit the road, fired up the barbecue grill and jumped into the pool this weekend to celebrate the start of summer 2024. Analysts are expecting the Memorial Day weekend to usher in yet another summer of strong consumer spending on travel and other leisure activities.

11 hours ago

This image released by Sony Pictures shows Garfield, voiced by Chris Pratt, in a scene from the ani...

Lindsey Bahr, The Associated Press

‘Furiosa,’ ‘Garfield’ lead slowest Memorial Day box office in decades

Movie theaters are looking more and more like a wasteland this summer. Neither “ Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga ” nor “ The Garfield Movie ” could save Memorial Day weekend, which is cruising towards a two-decade low.

12 hours ago

Sam Lemon, right, speaks during a news conference with Susie Williams Carter, center, and lawyer Mi...

Alisha Ebrahimji, CNN

A Black teen wrongfully executed for murdering a White woman in 1931. Now, his family is suing to defend his name

More than 90 years after Alexander McClay Williams was wrongfully executed, his family is suing the Delaware County, Pennsylvania, for damages, alleging he was sentenced to the electric chair for a crime he did not commit.

13 hours ago

Damage is seen at a truck stop the morning after a tornado rolled through, Sunday, May 26, 2024, in...

Sean Murphy and Julio Cortez, The Associated Press

At least 15 dead after severe weather carves path of ruin across multiple states in the South

Powerful storms have killed at least 14 people and left a wide trail of destruction across Texas, Oklahoma and Arkansas. The weather obliterated homes and destroyed a truck stop where drivers took shelter during the latest deadly weather to strike the central U.S.

14 hours ago

Passengers check in at San Francisco International Airport on May 24, 2024 in San Francisco, Califo...

Rebekah Riess, CNN

TSA sets new record Friday for most travelers screened in a single day

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) announced that it set a new record for most travelers screened in a single day on Friday, according to a post from the agency on X, formerly known as Twitter.

1 day ago

President Joe Biden at the US Military Academy commencement ceremony in West Point, New York, on Ma...

Aileen Graef, Athena Jones and Shania Shelton, CNN

Biden touts expansion of NATO and actions in the Middle East during West Point commencement

President Joe Biden touted the expansion of NATO, his actions in the Middle East and progress in lowering military sexual assaults in a commencement address to the West Point graduating class Saturday.

1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 Internet Safety Tips for Kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why Printer Security Should Be Top of Mind for Your Business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

No deaths reported after rescuers rush to save residents from Iowa building collapse, officials say