BRONX, New York (WABC) — A 30-year-old construction worker was killed and another critically injured when a freight elevator collapsed and fell several stories in the Bronx Wednesday morning.
Emergency crews were called to a construction site on Bruckner Boulevard around 8:15 a.m. after the elevator dropped to the first floor.
The two men, working for SDI Construction, were loading material into the freight elevator on the top floor when it fell.
Both workers were found unconscious and unresponsive inside.
The 30-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene, while the other, 29, was rushed to Lincoln Hospital in critical condition.
“Very, very devastated, in tears,” said Reverend Oswald Dennis, who ran to the building shortly after the incident. “We had a little moment of prayer.”
The identity of the worker who died hasn’t been been released, but coworkers say he was a supervisor.
“Your heart goes out to whoever’s family this is,” said John Ferrington, who delivers to the site. “It’s a terrible thing to find on a job site and makes you think about your family, of course. I’m going to call my wife.”
The location is a four-story mixed occupancy building that is under construction, and inspectors with the Department of Buildings are investigating.
Work was being done on the elevator at the time, but it is unclear what caused it to fall.
“Every worker who leaves for the job site in the morning deserves to come home safely at night,” the DOB said in a statement. “We are committed to finding out how this tragic incident occurred, and if we find that safety rules were ignored, we will hold those responsible to account. Along with our partners in law enforcement, investigators from our Construction Safety and Elevator Enforcement units will be conducting a thorough investigation of the events that led up to this incident.”
The workers had permits for elevator work, and the existing building has multiple active construction permits, including for interior renovation, exterior work, vertical enlargement, and change of use.
A Full Stop Work Order has been issued for the site, and the investigation is active and ongoing.
Vacant for the past 15 years, the former ice factory has been best known as “The History Channel building” because of a huge Billboard on the roof — thought it now reads “I Heart Radio.”
Another worker died in 2019 after a fall at the same building.
It was slated to be the home of the Dream Charter School’s main campus.
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