Manhattan Crane Collapses in Flames, Injuring Six

A construction crane, stationed 45 stories high in Manhattan’s Hudson Yards, succumbed to intense flames, causing it to buckle and collapse. The incident, which occurred at 550 10th Ave., was captured in dramatic footage showing the crane falling forward, striking a building across the street, and shattering parts of itself. The impact sent debris flying below and caused the crane to swing back to the building it was stationed on, slamming into its own tower and causing more debris to fly off.

The force of the impact was too much for the machine to withstand, and the last cords binding it to the base snapped off, causing the crane to plummet to the ground. The footage also shows pedestrians fleeing the scene and turning back when the crane hit the streets.

The fire broke out on Wednesday morning when the crane was stationed 45 stories high on a vacant building at 550 10th Ave. The fire caused the crane’s tethers to snap, causing the machine to slam against a building across the street. Six people, including two firefighters, were injured when the burning crane crashed down. Despite the harrowing scene, those caught by the falling debris only suffered minor, non-life-threatening injuries, according to authorities.

At least three people were hospitalized, and one of the firefighters injured was experiencing chest pains, according to FDNY First Deputy Fire Commissioner Joseph Pfeifer. “You see the debris on the street, this could have been much worse. We were fortunate that this was not a busy time of day,” Mayor Eric Adams told reporters at the scene.

Given the debris that was sent plummeting to the street, officials said it was miraculous that no one died. Firefighters were able to extinguish the blaze by 9:30 a.m. Officials confirmed that the crane operator was in the machine when it went up in flames, but was unable to put the fire out and escaped without injury. The FDNY managed to extinguish the flames, which grew to a five-alarm fire, by around 9:30 a.m. The cause of the fire is still not clear, authorities said.