A woman who lived in The Davenport, an apartment building that partially collapsed Sunday in downtown Davenport, was rescued shortly before 8 p.m. Monday.

Her family, who spoke briefly with our Local 4 News crew, said she called a relative to say she was stuck in the apartment, where she had been hiding under a couch after the partial collapse of the building. Rescuers saw her waving from an apartment window.

Emergency responders rescue a woman who still was in her apartment after the apartment building partially collapsed Sunday. (photo by Mike Colón)

Family members, who had insisted she still was inside the building, greeted her with relief and bystanders broke into applause after firefighters used a ladder and bucket to bring her to safety.

An ambulance crew gave her a health check right after the rescue.

Local 4 News will remain in contact with her family and officials to provide details when they become available.

Demolition scheduled

According to a Monday night news release, crews from Davenport Fire, Police and Public Works responded to the scene to secure the area and respond to the incident.

Fire crews safely located and assisted more than a dozen people “via self-evacuation from the property,” the release says. Once utilities were secured and conditions were improved the Fire Department continued search and rescue operations.

“The City of Davenport is grateful for the aid of several partner agencies including Bettendorf Fire, Moline Fire, Rock Island Fire, Bettendorf Police, Scott County Sheriff’s Office and Iowa State Patrol,” the release says. “Total scene response is estimated at over 150 personnel.”

Because of the complex nature of the incident, Davenport Firefighters requested both regional and state resources to assist with technical rescue efforts. MABAS43 and MABAS39 units and the Iowa Task Force 1 Urban Search and Rescue Team were brought in to respond to the scene. These units are equipped with and utilized specialized equipment and supplies to safely shore up the structure, gain access to victims, and extricate them from unique situations, the release says. Using thermal imaging, drones, and a team of service dogs, teams attempted to locate victims within the structure. MABAS43, MEDIC, and local medical professionals located and extricated a victim. Because of the nature of her injuries and entrapment, “extrication took an extended period of time,” the release says.

“The events of Sunday night are tragic and complicated,” said Davenport Fire Chief Mike Carlsten. “An incident like this requires the hard work and expertise of all of our first responders as well as the cooperation of partner agencies. I am proud of everyone’s efforts.”

After extensive rescue operations, no confirmed viable signs of life were noted, the release says. “After multiple rescue evolutions over the course of the 24 hours since the incident, crews were unable to find any victims in need of rescue,” the release says.

“As efforts to save lives and secure the safety of the surrounding area were underway, the City of Davenport hired an independent and certified structural engineer to evaluate the structural integrity of the building. After conferring with City building officials, it was determined that the building had sustained substantial damage, severely compromising the integrity of the building,” says the release.

‘Imminent danger of collapse’

“At this time, the building remains in imminent danger of collapse with the condition on site continuing to worsen,” according to the release. “It is the opinion of the structural engineer that the debris pile is currently contributing to the stability of the building and that removal could jeopardize or accelerate the inevitable collapse of the building. Building officials are working with Valley Construction on a plan to safely dismantle and demolish the remaining structure.”

The release says that, throughout the day Monday, Davenport Police worked to make contact with and account for all people known to be residents in the building when it collapsed. “Currently, there are unaccounted individuals that were residents of the property,” the release says. Davenport Police continue to attempt communication with people that are unaccounted for, including being in contact with their families.

“This situation is devastating to the residents of this building and also to our community. My heartfelt condolences go out to those who have lost their home and possessions. My prayers are with the families of those who remain unaccounted for and for a swift recovery for those who were injured,” said Davenport Mayor Mike Matson.

“With the current structure in imminent danger of collapse, the necessity to demolish this building stems specifically from our desire to maintain as much safety for the surrounding area as possible,” said Rich Oswald, director of development and neighborhood services. “We appreciate the expertise of the professionals collaborating on site to determine the best way to do this.”

The city will hold a news conference at 10 a.m. Tuesday to provide updates, the release says.