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High Drama: 2 Workers Rescued in NYC

Friday, June 14, 2013

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Two workers, stranded on a failed scaffold for nearly two hours, were rescued Wednesday (June 12) afternoon from 500 feet above the streets in Midtown Manhattan.

The men—identified as Victor Carabello, 26, of the Bronx, and Stephen Schmidt, 49, of Brooklyn—were suspended outside the 44th floor of the 46-story Hearst Tower from approximately 2:30 p.m. to 4:17 p.m.

FDNY / Twitter

The workers were performing routine servicing to the window washing equipment when the scaffold on the Hearst Tower lost power, according to NBC.

Huge crowds swarmed the streets below to watch the drama unfold as New York City Fire Department officials pulled the maintenance workers to safety through a window, reports said.

The rescuers had to cut through windows next to the scaffold to reach the men.

No Major Injuries

Both men underwent a medical evaluation once they were rescued and were found to have suffered no major injuries.

“They were all smiles, thankfully,” Moses Nelson, one of the FDNY paramedics on the scene, told local television reporters.

Apparently, the scaffold’s middle motor lost power causing the equipment to buckle at an angle, reports indicate. The workers had on fall protection equipment, reports said.

The rig was reportedly specially designed for the high-rise office building.

The city’s Department of Buildings said it is investigating the incident, according to reports.

The Hearst Tower is the global headquarters for Hearst Media. Built in 2006, the building was the “first green office building” in New York City, according to


Tagged categories: Access; Commercial Construction; Good Technical Practice; Health and safety; Paint application equipment; Scaffolding

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