Friday, May 30, 2008
BLOOMBERG CALLS CRANE COLLAPSE 'UNACCEPTABLE'
May 30, 2008 --
This morning's crane collapse, the second this year, is "unacceptable and intolerable," said Mayor Mike Bloomberg, who promised to beef up safety and determine what happened.
"Every time there's a major thing we always say, 'We're going to do an investigation,'" he said on WABC-AM. "The real issue is, do you learn something and then change things? Or is it just, this is a way to stall by saying we're going to do an investigation. We're not going to stall.
"We did have something we did after the last one. I will be, you can rest assured, spending most of the rest of the day finding out was that enough? And in some cases it may just be that a piece of steel breaks and, you know, there's nothing you could have ever done about it but that's not a good comfort if somehow are you going to explain to somebody who's dead, their relatives, that oh, you know, accidents happen. That's not a good answer."
There are two confirmed deaths in this morning's collapse at 91st Street and First Avenue. Firefighters are searching the scene. The crane tumbled into the 23-story building before crashing onto the street below.
On March 15, contractors building a 46-story condominium near the United Nations were trying to lengthen a crane when a steel support broke. The crane demolished a four-story town house and damaged several other buildings. Seven people died in that incident.
Bloomberg acknowledged that the city has to grow, which means using cranes, but said safety comes first.
"We need to build high-rise buildings," he said. "But we have to find a way to do it safely. And you can rest assured, I don't care how much the industry says, 'Oh you're slowing down our construction or your jobs,' first comes safety and then we can talk about the rest. And ... I don't need any developer or union leader or anybody else telling me about the consequences of slowing things down. Nobody wants this economy to grow more than me. But we're not going to kill people."
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