Watch CBS News

Officials: Person Rescued From House Collapse In West Phila. Was There Illegally

By Greg Argos

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) --  Fire rescue crews late this morning freed a person trapped in the basement of a house that was under construction in West Philadelphia.

Investigators say the home is located in the 100 block of North Salford Street.

A spokesperson for the Department of Licenses and Inspections says the building was classified unsafe. Contractors, hired by the homeowner, were doing the necessary repairs when the floor gave way into the basement. That's when they discovered someone beneath the debris.

The man was unlawfully in the building. He was taken to an area hospital and is expected to be okay.

"The first floor collapsed and we had a person trapped," said Mike Senski of the Philadelphia Fire Department.

Special operations units removed the man, trapped after 50 minutes and they used airbags to create space around him.

"It was a lengthy operation," saud Senski.

"Our understanding at this point is that that gentleman was not part of the contractor's crew and may have been in the building looking for scrap," said Karen Guss of the Department of Licenses and Inspections.

The commotion created havoc for neighbors who had to leave their homes. Those living nearby are glad that no one was killed.

Licenses and Inspections officials were able to inspect the nearby homes and deemed them safe to allow neighbors to re-enter their homes.

Philadelphia Police are looking into whether or not the victim could face charges.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.