Crane collapses as winds howl in South Florida

11 September, 2017, 00:52 | Author: Irene Delgado
  • Construction cranes collapse in downtown Miami

Hurricane Irma's powerful winds forced one crane in downtown Miami to snap in half Sunday morning.

According to reports from city officials, the crane fell on Biscayne Boulevard, located in the heart of downtown Miami.

The city identified two dozen tower cranes working on construction sites as a concern ahead of Irma.

Before the storm, the city of Miami had warned of the dangers of the tower cranes dotting the Miami skyline - some 20 to 25 across the city.

"We heard a loud crack toward the bay", Ape said. Miami-Dade and Broward counties issued those orders starting Thursday for barrier islands and low-lying mainland areas in the metro area of 6 million people, where forecasters predict the hurricane with winds of 180 miles per hour (290 kph) could strike by early Sunday. Only a few companies are certified to do that kind of work, said Dan Whiteman, vice chairman of Coastal Construction, who has 12 cranes in the Miami area.

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It said winds would likely fluctuate slightly, but the storm would remain at Category 4 or 5 strength for the next day or two. Earlier , he posted video on Facebook showing wind and pounding rain whipping the shoreline as Irma's core approached.


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Officials urged people in buildings facing the crane to seek shelter on the opposite side of the building or in a stairwell. He said videos of the collapse posted on social media showed a luffing crane, which lacks a horizontal arm and does not spin.

According to the resident, the crane is on top of the PMG building that is now under construction. "We will have a crew over to secure the crane as soon as the weather permits".

No injuries were reported after either crash, said Miami City Manager Daniel Alfonso.

The major exception, Whiteman said, is if a tornado forms, which "virtually nothing" would be able to withstand.

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