FDNY deployed robotic Dalmatian dog to survey unstable collapsed parking garage in Manhattan

ByAlexandra George WABC logo
Tuesday, April 18, 2023
Video shows digidog in action at parking garage collapse
Video shows one of the city's new digidogs in action at the parking garage collapse in Lower Manhattan.

LOWER MANHATTAN, New York (WABC) -- Exactly one week after New York City Mayor Eric Adams and the NYPD reintroduced robotic police dogs, one of the FDNY's gadget hounds was in action at the scene of the deadly parking collapse in Lower Manhattan.

"Thank God we had the robotic dog that was able to go in the building," Adams said. "This is ideally what we talk about, not seeing a human being inside a building as unstable."

The FDNY used a Dalmatian robot dog to help survey the area as well as drones to get an aerial view of the building.

"Our robotics unit happened to be nearby. They were on scene very quickly," FDNY Chief of Operations John Esposito said. "They were able to give us a video inside and then we're able to fly drones inside to conduct an assessment and conduct searches."

One person died, and at least five others were injured after a parking garage next to a Pace University building partially collapsed in Lower Manhattan.

One person is dead and multiple are injured after a parking garage collapsed in Lower Manhattan. The Eyewitness News team is live on scene with the latest.

The robots were crucial in keeping first responders safe.

"They're able to stream, and stream the video directly to all phones directly to our command center," Esposito said. "This is the first time that we've been able to fly inside in a collapse to do this and try to get us some information again without risking the lives of firefighters."

The parking garage, owned by 57 Ann Street Realty Association, had dozens of parking violations dating back decades.

According to the NYC Department of Buildings, the building in Tuesday afternoon's parking garage collapse has six open violations.

The uppers levels of the three-story garage collapsed around 4:15pm on Tuesday.


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