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Utah task force members in Florida to assist condo recovery efforts

Posted at 12:04 PM, Jul 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-08 14:04:51-04

SURFSIDE, Fla. — Two Utah Task Force One members are doing their part to help out with recovery efforts in the Surfside, Florida condo collapse.

READ: Six more victims found at site of collapsed building in Surfside, death toll up to 60

One of the members has been in Florida for about a week, while a second member is scheduled to arrive Thursday to join with other states in the recovery process.

Both task force members, Wade Russell and Mike Ulibarri, are on the incident support team in Florida which helps to manage rescue resources at the site.

“It is unfortunate that this type of work, where rescue turns to recovery, it is grueling and long hours, long shifts for these people, but we’re ready for it, and when the call comes we’ll go,” said Bryan Case, program manager for Utah Task Force One.

There are 28 disaster teams around the nation, each with specialized skills and ready to jump in the action when needed.

“This is really an unprecedented thing happening in the United States, however you know here in Utah, as in Florida, collapses happen because of hurricanes and wind events, that same stuff could be realized here in the event of an earthquake, and so we are very well prepared to deal with these types of incidents,” said Case.

READ: Sisters in Florida condo collapse buried in same coffin

As the days drag on, crews are now in recovery mode, not expecting to find any survivors.

“What I tell a lot of our new members when they first join our task force is, that there are so few people in this country that actually get to be members of the system and we don’t have to do this work, but we get to do this work,” said Case.

Both Utah task force members could be there as long three weeks depending on recovery efforts.