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World & Nation

Seattle construction crane collapse kills four

Emergency crews work the scene of a construction crane collapse near the intersection of Mercer Stre
Firefighters at the scene of a construction crane collapse in downtown Seattle.
(Joshua Bessex / Associated Press)

Four people were killed and three hospitalized after a construction crane collapsed Saturday in downtown Seattle, pinning six cars, the city’s fire chief said.

The four were dead by the time firefighters got to the scene, Fire Chief Harold Scoggins said. He said two of the dead were crane operators and the other two were vehicle occupants.

Three people — including a mother and her baby — were transported to the hospital, Scoggins said. A fourth injured person was treated at the scene.

The crane collapsed near the intersection of Mercer Street and Fairview Avenue near Interstate 5 shortly before 3:30 p.m., Scoggins said.

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He said officials do not yet know the cause of the collapse, which happened on a busy street.

“My thoughts and prayers are with those killed and injured,” Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan said on Twitter.

The crane was atop an office building under construction in a densely populated area.

“It was terrifying,” Esther Nelson, a biotech researcher who was working in a building nearby, told the Seattle Times.

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“The wind was blowing really strong,” and the crane appeared to break in half, she said.

With Amazon and other tech companies increasing their hiring in Seattle, the city has dozens of construction cranes building office towers and apartment buildings. As of January, there were about 60 construction cranes in Seattle, more than any other American city.

A 28-year-old man, a 25-year-old mother and her baby were being treated at Harborview Medical Center, spokeswoman Susan Gregg said. None of the injuries are life-threatening, she said.


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