Demolition crews gather items from Allegro Palm apartments for fire victims

RIVERVIEW, Fla. — The Riverview apartment building struck by lightning two weeks ago will be demolished, but first, some residents were given 30 minutes to gather what’s left inside their units before it’s no longer their property.

Some of those folks don’t think that’s enough time. Plus, they say they weren’t allowed to enter the apartments, instead, they tell ABC Action News they were instructed to make a list of items they want crews from the demolition company to try to grab for them.

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"Out of 24 units only 10 people are going to be able to get their stuff,” said David Conyers, one of the residents with salvageable items. "Its hard to get stuff that way because only I know where everything is at, but I need to see it because if something is bad of course I don't want it but if something is good I want to grab that."

He says he signed a document that confirms Interstate Complete Restoration won't be held liable for the things left behind when crews demolish the building. Conyers says if he didn't sign it, he wouldn't get any time to gather his belongings.

"For right now, my assumption is this is a one time deal,” he said. "You got 30 minutes, if you lose that 30 minutes, you forfeit your property."

But nowhere in the document does it outline how long crews would be in each apartment, which is why he hopes they'll go in again if they can’t get everything in 30 minutes.

We spoke to an employee from Interstate who says any public comment would need to come from the apartment complex. We reached out to Allegro Palm and an employee told us they have no comment.

At this point, a date for demolition hasn’t been announced to the public.

Paul Licata, the National Account Manager for Interstate Restoration, sent us the following statement:

“The fire at the Allegro Palm has been a devastating event for many people, and now our job is to help minimize the consequences of that event going forward. Right now, our focus is on safety and cooperation with local authorities as they try to do their own jobs. We have to make sure residents are safe, and make sure workers are safe as we prepare for demolition and reconstruction. We will let everyone know when there is more information that we can provide."

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