Construction Crane That Collapsed in NYC to Be Tested

The remnants of a construction crane that collapsed on Saturday in New York City, killing at least five people, will be sent to a forensics laboratory for testing, Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced today. According to a report on this morning, the mayor said the Department of Buildings had looked at the crane the day before the accident because high winds were forecast and they were checking on debris. The forensics test will determine whether the crane experienced a mechanical failure. The 200-foot crane collapsed at 303 East 51st St. destroying adjacent buildings, killing four construction workers and injuring 24 people.  A fifth body was found today. At press time, rescue workers were awaiting the removal of the crane’s final pieces before searching the site for more victims. The developer of the planned 43-story apartment building is Kennelly Development Co. and the construction manager is Reliance Construction Group. According to media reports, many residents of the area were concerned about safety at the site. According to, 38 complaints were answered, and 14 violations cited at the site. None of the violations concerned the crane. Due to a construction boom in the city, cranes have become a familiar part of the New York skyline.  The number of construction permits for new buildings or major renovations issued by the New York City Buildings Department increased 23.3 percent over the past five years, rising to 86,915 in 2007 from 70,515 in 2002, according to a report in today’s New York Times. In 2007, there were 128 construction-related injuries, up from 116 in 2006, according to the Times report. The number of fatalities fell from 18 in 2006 to 12 in 2007.