Woman rescued from partially collapsed Iowa building as city planned to demolish it
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A woman was rescued from a partially collapsed building in Davenport, Iowa, Monday as the city was planning to demolish it.
The woman, 52-year-old Lisa Brooks, poked her head out of a fourth-floor window Monday about 24 hours after part of the building crumbled. A family member said she hid under the couch when the building gave way, and a reported natural gas leak may have caused her to pass out.
Her nephew said his family had been searching for her since the collapse. But she went undetected in the building as officials said Monday that it was empty following a search and ready to be demolished.
Brooks became the ninth person to be rescued from the building. No fatalities have been reported.
Now that she’s safe, her family is worried others may be left behind.
“There’s still people out here and their loved ones are out here missing,” said Brooks’ nephew, Antoine Rabbit Smith.
He’s not the only one concerned. Some protested the demolition Monday night and demanded accountability.
Davenport city officials said Monday in a news release that the property owner was served with an order for the building’s demolition.
“The property is currently being secured by a contractor on site this afternoon and demolition is expected to commence in the morning,” the statement said.
But then on Tuesday morning, Davenport Chief Strategy Officer for Administration Sarah Ott issued a statement saying demolition “is a multi-phase process that includes permitting and staging of equipment that will begin today. The timing of the physical demolition of the property is still be evaluated.”
City officials had said in a news release Monday night that the building was “in imminent danger of collapse with the condition on site continuing to worsen.”
“The necessity to demolish this building stems specifically from our desire to maintain as much safety for the surrounding areas as possible,” said Rich Oswald, Davenport Director of Development and Neighborhood Services.
The city added in the Monday night release that police were “working to make contact with and account for all individuals known to be residents in the building at the time of the collapse” but “there are unaccounted individuals that were residents of the property.”
After the building crumbled, one former resident posted videos complaining of cracks in the walls and saying the more than century-old building needed repairs.
The fire department had ordered the building’s owner to make repairs and permitted work was underway.
CBS News has reached out to the landlord but had not heard back as of early Tuesday morning.