A desperate husband has recalled the final conversation he had with his wife before their Miami apartment collapsed around her.
Cassondra Billedeau-Stratton called her husband, Mike Stratton, to tell him that a sinkhole had appeared where the swimming pool used to be at the Champlain Towers apartment building.
Seconds later, the line went dead.
"It was 1.30am, I'll never, never forget that,' Stratton told The Miami Herald.
Billedeau-Stratton's older sister Ashley Dean revealed that Stratton told her: "She screamed bloody murder and that was it."
Dean also told The Washington Post that her sister had previously complained about the state of the building and the heavy equipment being lifted to the roof for repairs.
"I want to have hope," she said of her fears for her sister, "but I'm a realist. I don't want to hold on to false dreams."
The death toll now stands at 11 after another body was removed today.
A further 150 people remain unaccounted for as searchers continue to scour the ruins of the building.
Rescuers searching for a fifth day for survivors used bucket brigades and heavy machinery as they worked atop a precarious mound of pulverised concrete, twisted steel and the remnants of dozens of households.
Authorities said their efforts were still a search-and-rescue operation, but 150 people are still missing in the community of Surfside, just outside Miami.
The pancake collapse of the building left layer upon layer of intertwined debris, frustrating efforts to reach anyone who may have survived in a pocket of space.
"Every time there's an action, there's a reaction," Miami-Dade Assistant Fire Chief Raide Jadallah said during a news conference. "It's not an issue of we could just attach a couple of cords to a concrete boulder and lift it and call it a day." Some of the concrete pieces are smaller, the size of basketballs or baseballs.
Underscoring the risks of the work, he noted that families who rode buses to visit the site on Sunday witnessed a rescuer tumble 25 feet down the pile. Workers and victims must both be considered, he said.
"It's going to take time," he said. "It's not going to happen overnight. It's a 12-storey building."
- Additional reporting, AP