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Crane Collapses in Midtown Manhattan After Fire Breaks Out

Crane Collapses in Midtown Manhattan After Fire Breaks Out

This morning, a construction crane caught fire and collapsed in New York City, injuring at least twelve people.

A large fire on a construction crane was reported in New York City this morning.

As firefighters arrived at the scene in Midtown, Manhattan, the crane collapsed into an adjacent building. EMS confirmed minor injuries for ten civilians and two firefighters, with an additional firefighter and civilian sustaining major injuries.

The New York City Fire Department announced road closures and evacuations for the affected buildings. Over 200 firefighters responded to the five-alarm fire, FDNY First Deputy Commissioner Joseph Pfeifer said during a press meeting. Pfeifer credited the crane operator for noticing the fire and attempting to put it out before he had to evacuate to safety.

The FDNY confirmed that the situation was under control by noon.

"This could have been much worse," Mayor Eric Adams said. Pfeifer concurred, adding that the crane was carrying 16 tons of concrete, which could have injured or killed more people.

The building, located at 550 Tenth Avenue in Hell's Kitchen, is planned as a 54 story mixed-use building. NYC Department of Buildings commissioner Jimmy Oddo said that the structural integrity of the building will be evaluated, and that permits for construction and crane operation were pulled. Oddo also noted a prior, unrelated incident from earlier in construction at the site.

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics highlights the dangers of construction work in New York City. In 2022, the Bureau reported that private construction in New York City accounted for 22 workplace fatalities, the most of any sector.

"There's not a lot of known injuries at this time, but just a reminder of the danger that so many people are willing to put themselves through," Gov. Kathy Hochul said about the incident this morning.

Mayor Adams announced on Twitter that a full investigation into what caused the incident is underway. The Department of Buildings will be investigating the history of the construction contractor, as well as all personnel involved in crane operation.

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