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Crane partially collapses in midtown Manhattan

Crane partially collapses in midtown ManhattanCrane partially collapses in midtown Manhattan

Crane partially collapses in midtown Manhattan

Publish – 27 JULY , 2023

Dramatic Crane Incident in Midtown Manhattan Leaves Six Injured

In a tense and startling event, a construction crane in Midtown Manhattan burst into flames and partially collapsed on Wednesday morning, causing injuries to six people, as confirmed by New York City officials.

The incident occurred around 7:30 a.m. at 550 10th Avenue, where the crane, situated 45 stories above the ground, collapsed after a fire erupted in its engine compartment just moments earlier.

The crane operator, who was inside the cabin attempting to lift 16 tons of concrete at the time, noticed the fire but was unable to extinguish it with a handheld fire extinguisher. Thankfully, he managed to evacuate safely before the upper part of the crane collapsed, striking a neighboring building at 555 10th Avenue.

As a result of the incident, traffic was closed in the vicinity of 10th and 11th Avenues between 41st and 42nd Streets, near the Hudson Yards area.

Fortunately, the injuries sustained were minor, with four civilians and two firefighters affected. One of the firefighters complained of chest pains and was taken to the hospital for further evaluation.

Crane partially collapses in midtown Manhattan
Crane partially collapses in midtown Manhattan / credit – getty

 

Joseph W. Pfeifer, the deputy commissioner of the Fire Department, expressed relief during a news conference on Wednesday morning, stating that the situation could have been far more severe. Over 200 firefighters and emergency personnel responded to the scene to manage the situation.

Witnesses at the corner of 40th Street and 8th Avenue were captivated by the incident, taking photos and observing the unfolding events. Jordy Jimenez, who was washing sidewalks outside 33 West 42nd Street, described the crash as an exceptionally loud noise, unlike the typical city sounds.

Tyra Robbins, 26, working in a nearby building on 10th Avenue between 34th and 35th Streets, noticed a group of people seemingly capturing photos of the sunrise. However, her attention was swiftly drawn to the crane leaning dangerously over the street, and within seconds, it came crashing down.

Robbins described the surreal moment as if it happened in slow motion, leaving her frozen with disbelief. She witnessed a piece of the crane snapping off and hitting a building across the street, followed by the emergence of flames.

The incident has raised concerns about construction safety in the area, and investigations are likely to ensue to determine the exact cause of the fire and collapse.

Crane partially collapses in midtown Manhattan
Crane partially collapses in midtown Manhattan / credit – getty

Crane partially collapses in midtown Manhattan

Larry Krasner, residing on the 54th floor of a neighboring building, recounted the recent crane incident. Though he didn’t witness the crane’s collapse, he heard an explosion shortly after.

Describing the event, he said, “It was a big bang and then a fireball.” Having experienced the horrors of September 11, 2001, while working on the 45th floor of a building on Wall Street and witnessing the second plane hitting the World Trade Center, he couldn’t help but recall that moment when he saw the explosion on Wednesday. However, he quickly realized that the crane collapse was not nearly as extensive.

Recalling a previous incident in February 2016, Krasner mentioned another crane collapse in Lower Manhattan. On that occasion, the crew failed to securely lower the crane during wind gusts of around 20 miles per hour and falling snow. Tragically, a pedestrian lost their life, and three others were injured. The crane involved was significantly larger, with a carrying capacity of 330 tons, and was designed to withstand winds of up to 25 m.p.h.

 

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