Construction workers in Philadelphia know that the tall metal cranes that are used on projects involving large buildings sometimes fall down, potentially causing serious injuries to the workers below. That is what happened in an incident in another state on Jan. 9 that injured seven construction workers, including three who were buried under rubble caused by the crane collapse.
The construction accident took place at the site of new high-rise residential building. According to workers at the site, the cables on a crane that had been in place since at least the previous weekend snapped, causing the 200-foot crane to fall forward into the partly-constructed frame. With no concrete poured yet, the crane went through the building’s frame “like a hot knife in butter,” a carpenter said.
Workers scrambled to get out of the way and called out “Run, run!”, but three people were trapped underneath the crane. They suffered broken bones and other injuries, and had to be rescued from beneath the crane. Fortunately, none of the injuries were considered life-threatening, though their extent remains to be seen. Four other workers also suffered injuries in the incident.
Exactly what caused the cables holding up the crane to break is not yet known. Local officials have already begun investigating the collapse. The real estate developer that owns the property said it was cooperating with the investigation.
Although the injuries in this case are said to be non-lethal, injuries suffered in a crane collapse like this one could put construction workers out of commission for a long time, taking away their livelihood. Workers’ compensation could be available to those injured in a construction accident to make up for lost wages and medical costs.
Source: Washington Post, “Crane collapses at NYC construction site; 3 trapped underneath it rescued, 4 others also hurt,” Jan. 9, 2013