The top floor of an Uptown Dallas residential parking garage partially collapsed Friday, sending debris and concrete down through seven levels of the garage and leaving behind a hole the size of several automobiles.[[336419141,R]]
Nearly 100 emergency personnel surrounded the Renaissance on Turtle Creek, on the 3200 block of Turtle Creek Boulevard, as search dogs looked for any possible victims after section after section from seven floors collapsed on itself and came crashing to the ground.
Dallas Fire-Rescue's Jason Evans said five dogs trained to locate people in disaster zones checked the collapse area and none indicated any sign of trapped or injured people.
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Garage cameras didn't show anyone inside the vehicles within the collapse zone, Evans said, but property management was still working to make sure all residents were accounted for.
"I've been with Dallas Fire-Rescue for over 33 years," said Lt. Joel Lavender, a fire department spokesman. "[It's] just something I haven't seen before."
Jay Reddy lives at the Uptown condominium and took a picture of the pile of cars and concrete.
"I walked around the corner and saw a giant massive hole where there should be a parking structure," said Reddy.
Residents said dirt and debris from a condo pool renovation project had been placed in the exact location of the hole on the seventh floor of the garage.
"My only concern was we did have a major construction project going on," said Dedie Leahy, who is also a condo board member.
Investigators said it's too early to determine a cause, including whether heavy rainfall Friday was a factor.
"We do know that this area of the city of Dallas has been inundated with rain today and we don't know why or how it occurred at this particular building," said Lavender.
The search for possible victims was the main concern Friday, while Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas remained on standby for anyone who came through their doors.
"We are fully prepared for any victims," said Marshall Isaacs, medical director for Dallas Fire-Rescue. "Thankfully at this time there are none."
[DFW]Parking Garage Collapse
Building and structural engineers have determined the building is not safe for any personnel to make entry, Evans said, and an engineer will determine if it needs to be demolished entirely.
But before that can be done, rescue crews must make sure there's nobody trapped under the rubble.
"I hope and pray there's nobody in there," said Reddy. "Buildings and cars aren't people. They can be replaced, people can't."