UPDATED: Crane activity halted after Tribeca collapse kills one, injures three

UPDATED: Feb. 5 12:13 p.m. All crane activity will come to a halt on Friday following a crane collap

The collapsed crane on Worth Street in Tribeca (credit: FDNY)

UPDATED: Feb. 5 12:13 p.m. All crane activity will come to a halt on Friday following a crane collapse that killed one person and injured three others outside 60 Hudson Street in Tribeca, according to authorities. 

The accident occurred at 8:30 a.m. on the corner of West Broadway. In photos tweeted from the scene, the downed crane, which stood about 15 to 18 stories high, appears to be covering more than a city block, the New York Times reported. A source told The Real Deal that the person who died wasn’t a worker but a man sitting in his car. Police identified the man as David Wichs, 38, of Manhattan.  The crane operator, Kevin Reilly, 56, was trying to lower the crane due to winds approaching 25 mph when it fell, Mayor Bill de Blasio said during a press conference at the site.

“This incident occurred literally as they were lowering the crane to secure it,” the mayor said.

Crane collapse video — slow motion disaster footage; Glenn Zito via @NBCNews

— David Schoetz (@Schoetz) February 5, 2016

Police said that the DOB is investigating the incident.  The mayor also announced a citywide bar on crane activity for the day. He ordered that 376 crawler cranes and 43 tower cranes be secured immediately. The DOB inspected the crane at 6:20 a.m. on Thursday and cleared it for the next phase of work on the site.  Galasso Trucking and Rigging is listed in DOB records as the crane operator. The crane was owned by Bay Cranes. Neither could immediately be reached for comment on Friday morning. The crash has caused some gas leaks, and buildings that were hit by the equipment have been evacuated, the mayor said. Con Edison has shut down gas in all buildings along Worth Street between West Broadway and Church Street, and the area is expected to be closed off to traffic for several days.

BREAKING NEWS: #FDNY 10-60 Code 1 Crane Collapse Box 0151, 40th Worth St. Between Broadway & Church, #Manhattan Battalion 1 has a Crane collapse with a confirmed person pinned inside #NewYorkFireDept #CraneCollapse #NewYorkFire #NYC #HeavyRescue #NewYorkFireDepartment Photo is from @rhdjonwrd A photo posted by Rubén • Fire Photographer/Buff (@socalfirebuff1) on Feb 5, 2016 at 6:05am PST

The crane collapse occurred outside 60 Hudson Street, according to workers in the building, which is owned by the Stahl Organization, Williams Real Estate and Meyer Equities. Applications with the Department of Buildings show that crane use was approved for the site on January 12. Permits were approved in October for renovations on the third, sixth and 24th floors. The mayor said the crane — whcih had a 565-foot boom and a capacity of 330 tons — was being used to replace air conditioners and generators on the building’s roof. The base of the mobile crane was located at 60 Hudson and fell east along Worth Street.

Stahl did not immediately return calls seeking comment.

Bill Farrell, a spokesman for the International Union of Engineers Local 14, said that Reilly is a union member. DOB records indicate that he has a class B hoisting machine operator license, which means that he can operate all cranes in New York City regardless of height.

This is the first fatal crane collapse in the city since 2008. Seven people were killed in Turtle Bay at the site of HFZ’s Halcyon condos at 303 East 51st Street. Developers later scaled the height for that building down, from 500 feet to 360 feet. Just last year 10 people were injured a crane collapsed at Sapir Organization’s 261 Madison in May. Bay Cranes owned the crane involved in that incident as well.   Correction: An earlier version of this report, citing news articles, said the man killed had been a construction worker at the site and that the injury count was higher. Officials have since lowered the injury tally. 

The collapsed crane on Worth Street in Tribeca (credit: FDNY)

The collapsed crane on Worth Street in Tribeca (credit: FDNY)

One person died, two others were seriously injured when a crane collapsed in Lower #Manhattan’s #Tribeca neighborhood earlier, smashing the roofs of parked cars as it crashed onto the #NYC street, officials said. (Credit: REUTERS/BRENDAN MCDERMI) #cranecollapse

A photo posted by CBS News (@cbsnews) on Feb 5, 2016 at 8:39am PST

Source: The Real Deal