A crane snapped apart and toppled onto a high-rise apartment building on East 91st Street on the Upper East Side on Friday morning, killing two construction workers, in a cascade of broken brick and shattered glass that echoed a similar crane collapse in Manhattan just two months ago.
The city did not immediately know the cause of the collapse, which occurred moments after 8 a.m. at a construction site at the corner of 91st Street and First Avenue.
Witnesses said the horizontal arm of the crane began to circle and then snapped off, propelling the cab and the upper portion of the arm onto a white-brick residential building across the street.
The cab smashed into the top floor of the building, demolishing a portion of a 22nd-story penthouse, then plunged down the north facade, knocking off balconies and leaving a trail of pockmarks down to a Duane Reade drug store on the street level.
The operator of the crane, Donald Leo of Staten Island, was sitting in the cab as the structure fell. He was pulled from the wreckage by rescue workers and pronounced dead at the scene.
Two Killed in Manhattan Crane Collapse
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, in a previously scheduled on-air interview on WOR-AM this morning, said, “We’re not going to tolerate any rate of accidents any higher than it has to be.”
(WTF does that mean?)
More from the NY Times: Latest Updates on Fatal Crane Collapse
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