Ten people were injured when a massive air-conditioning unit being lifted by a crane from the top of a Manhattan office building broke free and fell off 28 stories on Sunday morning. Official informed that it landed in the midst of Madison Avenue, injuring 10 people.
The injured were trapped in the debris and they sustained minor injuries. They were immediately rushed to the hospital and were treated. Two of the injured were construction workers, while others were pedestrians and those inside passing cars, Mayor Bill de Blasio said.
Police received the emergency call at about 10:45 a.m. and upon reaching the spot, they found that the crane’s payload had broken free as it was heading to the top of the building.
Speaking to reporters on Madison Avenue, De Blasio said that it is obviously a very serious incident.
“Thank God, this incident occurred at an hour of the day on a weekend when there were not too many people around,” the mayor said.
The area around 261 Madison Ave. was barricaded by the police.
Buildings Department Commissioner Rick Chandler said that when the work involves massive equipment like a crane, it is typical to carry out the work on weekends. He said all the formalities were maintained and there had been no official complaints about the crane.
“We think this device, in this preliminary stage, is in good state and we’ll follow up with that,” Chandler said.
Madison at East 39th Street is a hub of many companies and restaurants.
Investigation is underway. The surrounding area and streets which were closed by police officials after the incident are expected to open by Monday morning.