A team of highly trained dogs has been deployed to assist in the rescue effort at A.JIn Davenport, Iowa, where three people are missing, Officials announced Thursday evening.
City officials said the dogs are referred to as “live and cadaver dogs” trained to detect humans, living or dead.
The team has been in touch with city officials since the crash Sunday, Chief Rick Halliran, director of the First Iowa Task Force, said at a news conference Friday. Task force members were mobilized to assist in the early stages of rescue and recovery.
Officials made a formal request to help the team get additional support with recovery operations on Wednesday. The state’s urban search and rescue squad returned the next day.
“We had to put some foundations and things in place before we could get the team back,” Davenport Fire president Mike Carlstein said. “For the first 24 to 36 hours we were there, the facility was in a constant state of motion and we had to allow the building to settle down before we could formulate a solid plan before we could get their team back and really move forward.”
Officials said nearly 50 people are helping with the effort.
“This research was completed before sunset last night, and that has allowed us to move on to the next phase of our mission, which is to cement, secure, control and recover the building,” Halliran said. “Iowa Task Force One has installed external supports on walls that our engineers have deemed unsafe.”
When asked if anything had been discovered, Halliran said he couldn’t reveal that yet.
The six-story building collapsed shortly before 5 p.m. Sunday local time. Authorities initially said five people were missing, but Davenport Police Chief Jeff Bladel said Thursday two of them have since been contacted and are safe. One came out a month ago and was found in Texas, and the other was found locally.
The three missing residents have been identified as Brendan Colvin, 42, Ryan Hitchcock, 51, and Daniel Breen, 60. The three men were described as having a “high probability” of returning home when the building partially collapsed.
Officials said seven people were rescued early, and another pulled out later. Karlstein said more than a dozen others were escorted out of the building because they were “disrupting themselves”.
The city later released documents, including structural engineering reports, showing the building’s owner warning that parts of the building were unstable.
Engineer’s report dated May 24,The proposed stains on the west side of the building’s brick facade “appeared imminently to fall” and could present a safety hazard to vehicles or passers-by.
theThe openings of those windows, some filled and some unfilled, were unsafe. In one case, the orifices were “bulged out” and appeared “poised to fall out”. Inside the first floor, unsupported window openings help to “explain why the façade is currently close to turning outward”.
“It is unlikely that the brick façade could be maintained in place, but it could be demolished in a safe and controlled manner,” the report said.
Andrew Wold, the building’s owner, released a statement saying “our thoughts and prayers are with our tenants” and that his company, Davenport Hotel LLC, is working with agencies to help them.