Body of worker located in rubble at MDC garage collapse in Doral

The victim is believed to be electrician Robert Budhoo, who has been missing since the collapse in west Miami-Dade

10/15/2012 5:04 PM

10/16/2012 11:52 AM

After nearly a week of waiting, the family of missing contraction worker Robert Budhoo Monday afternoon received the news they were dreading.

The body of a man believed to be the missing electrician was located in the rubble of a collapsed building garage at Miami Dade College’s West Campus.

Authorities believe the victim is Budhoo, 53, of Tamarac, but official confirmation will have to wait.

The body, described as being “deep within the rubble,” is in a precarious area of the five-story garage which collapsed just weeks from being completed.

“Due to the instability of the collapsed rubble, along with serious safety concerns for the workers on site, it appears the physical removal of the body may take additional days,’’ said Miami-Dade police spokesman Det. Roy Rutland.

The discovery brings to four the number of workers trapped and killed by the Doral collapse a week ago , making it one of the deadliest construction accidents in Miami-Dade in recent history.

The length of time it took to locate Budhoo has angered his family, who earlier this week complained the work to reach him had come to a disturbing stop, when they still held out hope the Jamaica-native was trapped but alive in the rubble.

Family members on Monday said they were frustrated with the apparent slow pace of the recovery efforts and the lack of communication from Miami-Dade officials.

News of the body’s discovery was disheartening for the family, which has hired an attorney.

“There’s some relief, but it’s still mixed with anger,” said Judith Budhoo, the victim’s niece. “We’re left with a lot of questions – that’s the hard part. How long was he alive? Was there anything else that could have been done to save him?”

There was also some confusion as to where in the rubble the body was located.

The day of the construction accident, one Budhoo’s co-workers told the family and the rescue team that he last saw the missing man on the west side of the building, but family members said that night cadaver dogs identified and focused on a different spot that eventually turned out to be wrong.

“They found him right where we were telling them to look because the last worker he was with said that’s where he was but the dogs were not going over there,” Judith Budhoo said. “The whole thing is just a mess.”

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