Tuesday, October 21, 2014

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Chelsea Building Partially Collapses; Wind Possible Factor

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As Sandy reached its height, the facade tore away from a Chelsea building, exposing the apartments inside. NY1's Tina Redwine filed the following report.

It was an astonishing sight: the interiors of several apartments exposed to the street and to the elements after the fierce winds ripped the brick facade off a four-story building at 92 Eighth Avenue Monday night.

One woman was visiting her sister who lives on the third floor when she noticed plaster coming down.

"My sister came and got me," she said. "She said she wanted to move stuff away from the front because she was afraid it was going to get dirty or something. I don't know. And I took a look at and said 'no, no, no, we gotta get out.'"

The New York City Fire Department said the call came in just before 8 p.m. Monday that debris was falling onto the sidewalk.

They were on the scene quickly but several tenants said by that time, police officers had already gotten everyone out safely.

Still, eight firefighters rushed in to make sure everyone was out.

According to FDNY Battalion Chief Michael Fahy, while they were inside, "the facade of the building, all the brick work on the work, came down onto the sidewalk.

"We had three minor injuries to firefighters with just dust and debris in their eyes," Fahy said.

In all, 14 people had to be evacuated, several of them tourists staying in apartments let out for short-term rentals.

While firefighters knocked off debris that was still hanging off the facade, police worked to displaced residents in temporary shelter.

The fire department requests that residents call 911 if they see debris falling from a building.

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