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Crews Right Crane That Hit Lower Manhattan Building

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Mechanics and engineers have righted a crane that was poised precariously after it tilted and hit a 25-story building near Wall Street Saturday night, showering debris to the ground, rerouting traffic and causing evacuations.

There were no injuries reported after the crane hit a ledge near the top of the mixed-use building on Maiden Lane. Police say part of the lower Manhattan building's facade broke off and fell into the street.

The crane was in a plaza about half a block from the struck building. The base of the crane was on the other side of the street from the building, and the crane was leaning diagonally across the street onto the building. The struck building and three others near it were evacuated as a precaution, police said. Another was partially evacuated.

The crane had been authorized to lift mechanical equipment, such as large cooling units, to the roof of the building that was struck, but it was unclear what it was doing at the time because it was likely workers had already gone home for the day, Department of Buildings Commissioner Robert LiMandri said.

Buildings investigators were interviewing the crane operator and assessing the damage to the building, which appeared to be minor, LiMandri said.

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