Rescuers at a collapsed school in Haiti are ending the hunt for survivors and will soon demolish the remains of the building, where at least 87 people were killed, Reuters reported.
"Rescue workers and experts are making the last check to be certain there is nobody alive under the debris," Nadia Lochard, civil protection director for Haiti's west department, said on Sunday.
"Then we'll change phase. ... We'll start using heavier means to remove the debris and blocks of concrete. We will recover all the bodies and destroy the building," Lochard said.
Four survivors were pulled from debris on Saturday, a day after 150 others were injured by the tumbling floors, walls and rubble of the three-story La Promesse school. No other survivors have been found since, according to officials.
Disaster experts, officials and rescue workers had held back from using heavy equipment at the site out of fear wobbly blocks of concrete and other debris might fall on possible survivors under the rubble.
"We are trying the best we can to make sure no one alive is under the debris by the time we start using heavier equipment," said Eucher Luc Joseph, secretary of state for public safety.
The disaster occurred on Friday, during classes at the church school on the Haitian capital's outskirts.
Haiti, the poorest country in the Americas, is recovering from four tropical storms and hurricanes that killed more than 800 people and destroyed 60 percent of its crops in August and September.
Firefighters from Fairfax, Virginia, and rescue workers from Martinique were among the searchers and were using dogs to hunt for survivors.
"We get to a stage of the operation, where we need to go to heavier equipment-based operation," said Evan Lewis, a leader of one of the Virginia rescue teams. "There are some risks (people may still be alive in the debris), but we minimized them as much as we can."
The owner of the school and church, Protestant minister Fortin Augustin, was arrested. Haitian President Rene Preval said the school, with an enrolment of 700, had been built with hardly any structural steel or cement to bind concrete blocks.