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Surfside 911 calls reveal terror, disbelief during moments condo collapsed

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Recordings of 911 calls after an oceanfront Florida condominium building collapsed in the middle of the night show disbelief, panic and confusion as people tried to comprehend the disaster.

“Oh my God! The whole building collapsed!” one caller said to a dispatcher at the Miami-Dade Police Department, which released the recordings Wednesday from the June 24 collapse of Champlain Towers South. The names of the callers were not released.

“We’ve gotta get out. Hurry up, hurry up. There’s a big explosion,” a second caller said. “There’s a lot of smoke. I can’t see anything. We gotta go. I can’t see nothing but smoke.”

At least 97 people died in the collapse, and a handful of others are still missing. A cause has not yet been pinpointed, although there were several previous warnings of major structural damage at the 40-year-old building in Surfside.

Visitors take a picture in front of the makeshift memorial to victims of the Champlain Towers South building collapse.
Visitors take a picture in front of the makeshift memorial to victims of the Champlain Towers South building collapse.
AP

One 911 caller, a woman, said she saw what appeared to be a large depression near the swimming pool, which had concrete problems that investigators are looking into as they try to identify a cause.

“I woke up because I was hearing some noise. I couldn’t understand what was happening. I looked outside and I saw the patio area sinking down. The pool area started sinking down,” the caller said. “There are many parts of the building that went down. The building just went into a sinkhole. There will be many, many people dead.”

Yet another female caller said she was stuck near the building parking garage and needed help. Part of the condo remained standing after the collapse but was taken down later by a demolition crew.

An excavator removes the rubble of the demolished section of the Champlain Towers South building, as the demolition crew works to clean up the site of the partially collapsed condo building.
An excavator removes the rubble of the demolished section of the Champlain Towers South building, as the demolition crew works to clean up the site of the partially collapsed condo building that left many loved ones dead.
AP

“Can somebody help me get out, please? If the building comes down, it will come down on my head.”

“Can somebody help me get out, please? If the building comes down, it will come down on my head,” the caller said.

Release of the calls Wednesday came as a judge approved the sale of the oceanfront property, with proceeds intended to benefit victims of the deadly disaster.

At a hearing, Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Michael Hanzman ordered that the process begin to sell the site of Champlain Towers South, which could fetch $100 million to $110 million according to court records.

The court-appointed receiver handling finances related to the condo, attorney Michael Goldberg, said the judge wants the sale to move quickly.

Crews work to clear the rubble of the demolished section of the Champlain Towers South building, with the process of beginning to sell the site of Champlain Towers South ordered by Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Michael Hanzman.
Crews work to clear the rubble of the demolished section of the Champlain Towers South building, with the process of beginning to sell the site of Champlain Towers South ordered by Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Michael Hanzman.
AP

“He wants us to start exploring a potential sale,” Goldberg said of the judge in an email. “He did say he wants the land to be sold and the proceeds to go directly to the victims as soon as possible.”

Goldberg said the decision did not necessarily preclude a buyer from turning at least a portion of the site into a memorial, as some people have advocated. Other survivors want the structure rebuilt so they can move back in.

Hanzman’s ruling came as part of a series of lawsuits filed in the wake of collapse. The judge put the lawsuits on a fast track and authorized Goldberg to begin disbursing Champlain Towers insurance money to the victims and families.

The judge also approved returning $2.4 million in deposits that some Champlain condo owners had already made toward an assessment to pay for $15 million in planned major repairs.

Many residents have already made toward an assessment to pay for $15 million in planned major repairs, as crews continue to work on clearing the excess debris and rubble of the Champlain Towers.
Many residents have already made toward an assessment to pay for $15 million in planned major repairs, as crews continue to work on clearing the excess debris and rubble of the Champlain Towers.
REUTERS

In nearby Miami Beach, residents of an 82-year-old, two-story apartment building were ordered to evacuate because of concrete deterioration. The city ordered the evacuation of Devon Apartments on Monday and is giving residents until next Monday to leave the building, city spokeswoman Melissa Berthier said in an email Wednesday.

The apartment building is about 2 miles (3 kilometers) from Champlain Towers South.

After the collapse, Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava ordered an audit of all buildings over 40 years old. A condominium in nearby North Miami Beach also was ordered evacuated over safety concerns shortly after that audit started.

The collapse left officials around the county grappling with concerns about older residential buildings.

Following the terrible collapse of the Champlain Towers, leaving many families who lost loved ones in distraught , Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levin Cava ordered an audit of all buildings over 40 years old.
Following the terrible collapse of the Champlain Towers, leaving many families who lost loved ones in distraught , Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levin Cava ordered an audit of all buildings over 40 years old.
AP

Manny J. Vadillo, an attorney who represents the owners of the Devon Apartments, told WTVJ that they have worked “diligently” with the city since deciding in May to demolish the building by December.

He said they have started to “vacate the building in an orderly fashion,” adding that 14 people remained inside. He said the owners are helping residents move.

“My clients are extremely sensitive to safety and, in fact, visited the property several times since last week to speak with tenants when communications started with the city to ensure tenants were not caught by surprise,” Vadillo said. “Some tenants have been there many years.”

Resident Esmart Romero told WSVN that he was not surprised the city deemed the building unsafe.

“If you look at the condition of this apartment, it’s not good,” Romero said. “You get what you pay for.”

___

Anderson reported from St. Petersburg and Frisaro from Fort Lauderdale. Associated Press writers Bobby Caina Calvan in Orlando, David Fischer and Kelli Kennedy in Miami, and R.J. Rico in Atlanta contributed to this report.

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What Time Will ‘Riverdale’ Season 6 Be on Netflix?

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The season finale of Riverdale aired in late July on The CW. Notice we said season finale? Thankfully, the beloved series will return for a seventh season, but, unfortunately, Season 7 will be the final installment of Riverdale.

If you already streamed the current season, make sure to read Alex Zalben’s interview with Riverdale showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa on Decider. If you’re waiting to binge Season 6 on Netflix, well, you better clear your calendar because all 22 episodes are about to drop on the streamer. What time will the sixth season of Riverdale debut on Netflix? What time does Netflix release shows? Here’s everything you need to know.

WHEN IS THE RIVERDALE SEASON 6 NETFLIX RELEASE DATE?

Riverdale Season 6 premieres Sunday, August 7 on Netflix.

HOW MANY EPISODES ARE IN RIVERDALE SEASON 6?

The sixth season of Riverdale consists of 22 episodes.

WHAT TIME DOES NETFLIX RELEASE NEW SHOWS?

Netflix releases new episodes at 3:00 a.m. ET/12:00 a.m. PT.

WHAT TIME WILL RIVERDALE SEASON 6 BE ON NETFLIX?

Netflix is based out of California, so Riverdale Season 6 will be available to stream at 12:00 a.m. Pacific Standard Time (3:00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time) beginning Sunday, August 7. If the clock strikes 12:00 (or 3:00 a.m. for folks on the East Coast) and you don’t see the new episodes, give it a moment, hit refresh, and then enjoy the show!

WILL THERE BE A SEASON 7 OF RIVERDALE?

Yes! Decider recently covered that very topic.

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Actress Anne Heche Suffers Severe Burns After Crashing Car Into Los Angeles Home

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Actress Anne Heche, known for her roles in such films as Donnie Brasco, Volcano and I Know What You Did Last Summer, was involved in a fiery car crash in the Mar Vista area of Los Angeles on Friday.

According to TMZ, Heche was driving a blue Mini Cooper and had first crashed into the garage of an apartment complex. Residents of the apartment complex tried to get her out of the vehicle but she backed up and sped off.

Footage of Heche speeding down the streets of her neighborhood had been obtained by TMZ as well as her initial encounter at the apartment complex.

In the first clip, you can hear her car crash towards the end. It has been reported that the actress crashed into someone’s home, causing her vehicle and the house to erupt into flames. Heche suffered severe burns and was resisting being taken away in a stretcher. You can also view footage of this via the TMZ article.

It has not been confirmed whether alcohol has been involved in the incident since her condition prevents doctors from performing any tests to determine if she was driving under the influence. She is currently intubated in the hospital but expected to live.

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These are the vulgar license-plate requests the DMV has rejected

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Stay CL4SSY, New York!

The state Department of Motor Vehicles nixed 3,752 requests for vanity license plates in the last three years because it deemed them too raunchy, radical or simply ridiculous.

New York’s personalized plates go for $60 initially, and then $31.25 annually for renewal. You can get any plate as long as no one else has it and it’s not offensive.

Odds are a request for a plate that marks a wedding anniversary or shows your allegiance to a team — like METS86 — will pass muster with the DMV gatekeepers.

Vulgarity won’t get you to first base.

So plates with the phrase LFGM — the acronym for Pete Alonso’s “Let’s F–king Go Mets” rallying cry — did not make the cut.

And you won’t see anyone driving around with the custom plates MILFDAD, AS5M4N and WLHUNG.

Crude meanings such as “MILFDAD” are unacceptable by the DMV.
Crude meanings such as “MILFDAD” are unacceptable by the DMV.
New York DMV
NYC123
New York state Department of Motor Vehicles denied more than 3.5 thousand requests for license plates deemed inappropriate.
New York DMV
“AS5M4N” was rejected for referring to “Ass man.”
“AS5M4N” was rejected for referring to “Ass man.”
New York DMV

The DMV also put NICEBUNS, FATFANNY, GOTAPOOP and BENDOVER in the rear-view mirror.

One player unsuccessfully tried to score the plate YESDADDY, to no avail.

The DMV also shot down such dark requests as DEADGIRL, GENOC1DE, S8TAN, DETONATE and MURDERM3.

“SUM8ITCH” is not allowed.
“SUM8ITCH” is not allowed.
New York DMV
The DMV thoroughly nixed a request for “CNNLIES.”
The DMV thoroughly nixed a request for “CNNLIES.”
New York DMV
BOOBIE is prohibited.
BOOBIE is prohibited.
New York DMV

Getting political is a dead end too — FJOEBIDN, FDTRUMP and CNNLIES were nixed.

LUDEDUDE, NARCO, GOT METH and BLUNT also went up in smoke.

Staten Island attorney Bill Dertinger said his blue 1995 Jaguar SJS was tagged with ESQLTD after his company and his 2014 Porsche had the plate GHOSTGTS because the sleek sportscar was white.

“The plates can make you stand out — which can be a curse or a blessing,” the 54-year-old Dertinger said. “Make sure you don’t cut anybody off.”

A man attempted to sneak in “YESDADDY” onto his license plate.
A man attempted to sneak in “YESDADDY” onto his license plate.
New York DMV
The DMV stopped a request for “FJOEBIDEN.”
The DMV stopped a request for “FJOEBIDEN.”
New York DMV
The DMV also rejects any license plates referring to politics.
The DMV also rejects any license plates referring to politics.
New York DMV

There must be a New York Jets fan playing referee at the DMV because a request for the seemingly innocent plate GASE was sidelined. Ex-Jets head coach Adam Gase had an offensive 9-23 win-loss record during his forgettable two-year tenure.

The DMV would not reveal who gives the final yea or nay.

“The DMV reviews all custom license plate requests and works hard to ensure that any combinations that may be considered objectionable are rejected,” said agency spokesman Tim O’Brien.

“GLOCKS” referring to guns is not accepted by the DMV.
“GLOCKS” referring to guns is not accepted by the DMV.
New York DMV
“FLYMOFO” is not approved by the DMV.
“FLYMOFO” is not approved by the DMV.
New York DMV

He said guidelines on what plate combinations are restricted can be found on the DMV website: https://dmv.ny.gov/learn-about-personalized-plates. Approximately 50,000 personalized and custom plates are sold per year, O’Brien said.

Bagged Tags

The state DMV has rejected 3,752 requests for custom license plates in the last three years because it deemed them potentially offensive. Here are some:

YESDADDY

FJOEBIDN

FDTRUMP

GLOCKS

FLYMOFO

BOOBIE

AS5M4N

BUDLIGHT

DEADGIRL

SUM8ITCH

GENOC1DE

S8TAN

CNNLIES

DETONATE

MURDERM3

MILFDAD

WLHUNG

Source: NYS DMV

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