1 Dead in Collapsed Parking Garage in Lower Manhattan, NYC official Says [Video]

A parking structure in New York’s Lower Manhattan area has at least partially collapsed, killing one person and injuring several others, officials said Tuesday.

via: NBC New York

The collapse took place on Ann Street near Nassau Street at around 4 p.m. when, according to senior FDNY officials, the second floor of a five-story parking garage, collapsed into the first floor.

Officials confirmed one person — a worker in the building — died in the collapse.

“As far as we can tell, so far there were six patients — six workers in the building — at the time of the collapse,” FDNY Chief of Operations James Esposito said, adding that four were hospitalized in stable condition, one who refused medical attention, and one who tragically passed away.

Esposito described the rescue operation as “extremely dangerous” due to the unstable building, prompting firefighters to retreat and the department to send into the building the newly added NYPD robotic dog (also known as Digidog) to analyze the scene and make sure no one else was inside without putting in jeopardy the safety of first responders. Drones were also being used to get additional information from the scene, according to Esposito.

Although Esposito said first responders believe everyone is accounted for, they continue to search for any person possibly trapped in the crushed cars or amid the concrete rubble of the collapsed garage.

The garage is a location where the New York Sheriff’s Department parks their vehicles, New York City Sheriff Anthony Miranda told News 4 New York. All members of the department are accounted for.

Citizen App video taken from what appears to be a nearby building shows cars piled on top of each other as rubble is seen from the collapsed floor.

The city’s Department of Buildings is on the scene. According to the DOB, the building had a violation in 2003. It is unclear what the violation was for and if it was corrected. Additionally, the building has active permits related to electrical work on the premise. The building obtained its certificate of occupancy in 1957.

Erasmo Guerra, a witness, said the garage is usually “super quiet…there is nothing happening over there except cars being parked.”

“I heard this incredible noise around 4 o’clock this afternoon and I was wondering what that was so I went to the window and I just saw the top floor of this garage…just beginning to cave in and cars just falling into this pit,” Guerra, who captured video of the harrowing ordeal, told News 4 New York. “I was just in shock. I heard people on the streat just screaming and yelling for other people to get out.”

The collapse has prompted nearby Pace University to cancel classes, according to a tweet.

Streets near the scene of the collapse are closed off as first responders continue surveilling the area to make sure that no other person is trapped and as DOB personnel continue the investigation into the cause of the collapse.

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