WATCH: Dramatic video shows high-rise rescue after scaffold swings in TriBeCa

Derick Waller Image
Tuesday, May 15, 2018
Dramatic video shows high-rise rescue after scaffold swings
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Josh Einiger has more on the high-rise rescue in Manhattan.

TRIBECA, Manhattan (WABC) -- The wind may feel calm on the ground, but up above Friday morning, it was gusting so bad that a scaffold started swinging.

It was a dangerous situation that ended with a rescue high above Manhattan.

It happened at 111 Murray Street, a 64-story tower under construction in the shadow of One World Trade.

Crews worked frantically to rescue the two stranded glaziers -- skilled tradesmen responsible for cutting, installing and removing glass -- after the scaffold they were standing on got caught in a wind gust and swung around four times. Each time it swung, it smashed into windows nearly 50 stories in the air.

The NYPD released the raw video of the rescue.

"The scaffolding was perpendicular to the building, sticking straight out," FDNY Manhattan Borough Commander Roger Sakowich said. "It's an odd building. The building is actually concaved in a little bit, so as the scaffold got away from the building, the wind caught it and spun," Sakowich said.

The NYPD also released pictures of those workers in the moments before the rescue.

"We heard some screams and glass was falling and we all got evacuated, so they got everybody out of the building and everybody's safe it looks like," said Joe Moraglia, Local 1 Stone Setters Union.

West Street was closed for a time so workers could remove the remaining broken glass panels.

Both of the workers were uninjured.

"They wanted no part of medical treatment," NYPD Detective Gregory Welch said. "They just wanted to get back to work."

And with that rescue came a spectacular view.

"We enjoyed the ride up," Welch said. "Actually, when we came up to the 45th floor, there was an open door to the elevator where you could see out the beautiful Freedom Tower there."

There was one minor injury from falling glass, but that person also refused treatment. The effort to secure and retrieve the scaffold is ongoing, as is the investigation.


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