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18 Hurt When Partial Building Collapse Sends Debris Onto Bus In Harlem

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - Part of a building, which was under demolition since July, collapsed Tuesday morning, striking a city bus at 125th Street between Frederick Douglass Boulevard and St. Nicholas Avenue.

WCBS 880's Marla Diamond: Inspectors Had Previously Been Called To The Site


The brick facade of a 2-story building at 305 West 125th Street collapsed and sent debris onto scaffolding protecting the sidewalk surrounding the site around 9:15 a.m. Part of that scaffolding collapsed as well.

Demolition worker David Gibbs was working at the time of the incident.

"The elevator shaft -- there was a guy in there right, and he was working in there.  There was one on the top in the scaffold.  So all of a sudden, the wall gave out and it fell down and he ran out, and then the other part of the wall fell to the street," Gibbs told CBS 2's John Slattery.

Debris from the collapse struck the back of a Bx 15 bus which had 30 passengers on board, 1010 WINS' Terry Sheridan reported. Slattery reported that at least 9 people aboard the bus suffered minor injuries.

Scaffold Collapse Manhattan
The scene of a scaffold collapse - New York, NY - Sep 20, 2011 (credit: Marla Diamond / WCBS 880)

Officials said a total of 18 people were injured, including a mix of passers-by, workers and passengers. Two police officers also suffered minor injuries trying to rescue people.

1010 WINS' Al Jones with witnesses


"We heard a noise, a slow, like thunderous sort of noise.  It was a slow noise first, and then you heard the big 'whoosh,'" bystander Ed Edwards said.

Gisselle Ubeda, an employee of the nearby Rainbow store, described the scene.

"It looks terrible," Ubeda said. "Part of the building has fallen."

Witnesses said the front of the building started leaning forward amid the demolition, and tipped over.

A complaint was filed against the building earlier this month but the Buildings Department did not find any violations.

125th Street remains closed causing the M60, M100, M101, AND BX15 bus lines to be rerouted.


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