Mexicans, fighting fatigue and ebbing hope, hurried Wednesday to dig out survivors still trapped in dozens of collapsed buildings a day after a powerful earthquake rattled the capital and killed at least 230 people, including 30 schoolchildren.
Thousands of government and rescue workers were mobilized, plunging into the shattered shells of residences and offices across the city as legions of residents helped clear debris.
The harried activity at disaster sites stood in sharp contrast to the rest of the city, where an eerie quiet prevailed, with schools closed, businesses largely shuttered and the normally clogged rush-hour streets mostly empty.
But outside the crumpled buildings, the urgency was palpable as rescue workers clawed at rubble to remove it piece by piece and volunteers passed buckets of debris along long lines to waiting dump trucks.
As time passed, rescues became increasingly rare. On Wednesday morning, Sergio Iván Ruíz was pulled from the ruins of an apartment building in the Condesa neighborhood after being buried for more than 22 hours. As he was carried on a stretcher down the hillock of debris, rescuers and spectators broke into cheers and applause.