At least one died and 10 others injured after a deadly collapsed 12-storey residential building north of Miami.
Nearly 100 remain unaccounted, while rescue teams are still searching for survivors.
“Fire and rescue are in there with their search team, with their dogs,” Miami-Dade Police Director Freddy Ramirez told reporters.
“They’re in search-and-rescue mode, and they will be in that mode for a while. They are not quitting. They’re going to work through the night. They are not stopping.”
But officials say the efforts are dangerous as further rubble could collapse on top of rescuers.
“These are very difficult times, and things are going to get more difficult as we move forward,” Freddy Ramirez said.
Causes of the 40-year-old building collapse remains unclear.
But, eyewitnesses compared the scene to the 11 September 2001 attacks on the Twin Towers.
On video footage captured from nearby, the center of the building appeared to fall first, with a section nearest the ocean teetering and coming down seconds later as a huge dust cloud swallowed the neighborhood.
Work was being done on the building’s roof that may have been the cause.
“There were structural issues obviously – the building did collapse,” Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine told reporters.
A full investigation will begin after the rescue mission, officials said.
Foreign ministries and consulates of four countries said 22 nationals were missing in the collapse: nine from Argentina, six from Paraguay, four from Venezuela and three from Uruguay.
Israel also said that 20 of its citizens are missing in the incident.
Miami-Dade County’s Assistant Fire Chief Ray Jadallah confirmed 55 apartment units on the building’s northeast side had totally collapsed, with 35 people rescued from the rubble.
US President Joe Biden said that the federal government is ready to step in to assist after a building collapsed in Miami.
“We are on top of it. We are ready to move from the federal resources immediately, immediately, if in fact we are asked for it.”
“I say to the people of Florida, whatever help you want that the federal government can provide, we are waiting, just ask us, we’ll be there,” Biden added.