CNN BREAKING NEWS
One Killed in Pedestrian Bridge Collapse
Aired October 10, 2002 - 13:52 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN ANCHOR: We continue to follow this breaking news story out of Marcy, New York. We have confirmed that at least one person has been killed in the central New York area when a pedestrian bridge over a highway that was under construction collapsed as workers were pouring concrete into this area to complete the walkway. We're told the bridge fell about 18 feet to the roadway below. About 10 people injured, one confirmed dead. However, that might have changed.
We're going to go to Michael Benny, from upstate New York affiliate WTVH. He's there on the scene.
Michael, what more can you tell us about this accident?
MICHAEL BENNY, WTVH REPORTER: Kyra, those numbers have changed indeed. We are now hearing from the New York State Department of Transportation that a total of 13 construction workers have been injured in this accident and one person has died as a result of the accident. The state DOT regional manager in charge of the area of upstate says that this certainly is one of the worst-looking bridge collapses that he has seen in his 35 years on the job.
We do know that at about 11:00 this morning, at least 14 construction workers were pouring concrete on this pedestrian bridge, which is set to open at some point next year. It's been under construction for almost a year now. One of the witnesses who managed to walk away from the accident says he heard and felt a twisting sound and noise, a noise and almost a feel, which clearly happened as you take a good close look at what is left of the pedestrian bridge.
When it was over 13 people taken to local hospitals here in the central New York area. One person confirmed dead; that person's body is still under the wreckage of the bridge as we speak right now. The major concern for authorities is shoring up what is left of the pedestrian bridge to make sure it doesn't collapse any further when they try to go in and retrieve that body from the wreckage.
PHILLIPS: Michael, how has this affected travel within that area?
BENNY: Quite frankly, this an area that is not heavily traveled. There is a major expressway that is under construction. It's where I'm standing right now. It will link two upstate cities eventually, the city of Rome and the city of Utica. So no travel in this direction, and that being a pedestrian bridge not in use yet, not really hampering traffic in the area. Pretty rural area, Marcy, New York, here in Oneida County of upstate. PHILLIPS: So this pedestrian bridge, I was told it was linked to a high school? Is that correct, and did it affect students going to school?
BENNY: Not in use yet, Kyra, but the idea would be that once the expressway is built here, it would be a very dangerous area for children to be around. There is a school on one side of the bridge. It links a residential community on other side. The idea being that eventually if the bridge were up and running, that students would be using that as a path to and from school from where they live.
PHILLIPS: Our Michael Benny from our affiliate there in upstate New York, WTVH. We appreciate your report, Michael.
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