Southwest Florida’s Task Force 6 rewarded for their help following the Surfside condo collapse

Reporter: Michelle Alvarez Writer: Matthew Seaver
Published: Updated:
(Credit: Patronis Press Office)

The state is rewarding Southwest Florida’s Task Force 6 for their efforts on the ground in the aftermath of the Surfside condo collapse.

It has been 249 days since the Surfside condo collapse, not nearly enough time for memories to fade. For so many people, the pain is still real. Among them are the people who raced to the scene hoping to find people buried in the debris.

Shane Sibert is in charge of urban search and rescue for Task Force 6. Sibert and his team spent days on the pile. “To see them on and work, work, work. I mean, they were working in boots that had duct tape wrapped around them because they wanted to maintain and continue to work. They didn’t want to go to the camp and have to sit and wait for a pair of boots,” said Sibert.

State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis came to San Carlos Park on Monday to honor Siebert and his team because they “Kept fighting and fighting to find any signs of life. They worked 12-hour shifts in the Miami summer. They faced a hurricane, cutting rebar, cutting concrete, filling 5-gallon buckets with bucket brigades with debris hand by hand,” said Patronis, who is also the CFO for the state of Florida.

Each Task Force 6 member received a Surfside memorial challenge coin for their hard work and dedication. Patronis told the team he is pushing for $10 million more in funding to keep all of Florida’s urban search and rescue teams statewide elite.

“This isn’t just for us. We’re six of eight, so all the teams need this funding. That’s what in my heart, what I hope to see,” said Siebert. “This team has seen some things that not many people will ever see, and hopefully they don’t.”

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