Building collapse in the Bronx kills 1, injures 5, FDNY says

A construction worker died after a building partially collapsed in the Bronx Tuesday, officials said.
A construction worker died after a building partially collapsed in the Bronx Tuesday, officials said. Photo Credit: Chris Ware

A partial building collapse in the Bronx on Tuesday that left a construction worker dead and five others injured was a "preventable tragedy," the Department of Buildings said.

The third floor of the new building at 94 E. 208th St., near Steuben Avenue, was overloaded with concrete masonry blocks, which caused it to collapse onto the second floor around noon, according to a preliminary investigation by a DOB inspector.

"Our hearts go out to the family of the worker who died. No building is ever worth a person’s life," DOB spokeswoman Abigail Kunitz said. "We will continue to investigate this incident aggressively and bring all appropriate enforcement actions against those responsible."

FDNY chief of special operations John Esposito said there were "serious concerns" about the stability of the building as firefighters tried to rescue the worker, who was trapped under debris on the second floor.

"We were concerned about the second floor collapsing into the first floor during our operation," Esposito said during a news conference Tuesday afternoon. "We were able to build shores and put struts in there to support that load to make it safe for the rescue efforts.”

The trapped worker was removed from the debris by first responders but was pronounced dead, the FDNY said. The worker was not immediately identified.

Of the five others who were hurt, two were seriously injured and three suffered minor injuries, according to the FDNY.

A stop-work order was issued by the DOB on Tuesday and the building owner has been told to secure the site overnight. The DOB will continue to monitor the site and the investigation into the collapse is ongoing.

Three permits were issued in May related to the construction of the building, which was expected to include eight apartments, DOB records show.

The site did not have any violations prior to the collapse and it only had one open complaint, which was for a report of the construction company using cones to take up parking spots without a permit.

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