New Orleans Demolishes Cranes at Hard Rock Hotel Construction Site

Data News Weekly Staff Edited Report

On Sunday, October 20th at approximately 2:30 P.M. the two cranes Hard Rock Hotel in New Orleans, Portions of the Hard Rock Hotel, which has been under construction at the edge of the city’s historic French Quarter, collapsed October 12th. Three people were killed, although only one body has been recovered, and 30 injured.

For several days since the incident, traffic on this busy street has been diverted, as well as RTA Bus lines re-routed in the downtown area.

Once detonated, one of the cranes fell to the ground making a loud noise with smoke and dust in the air caused by the explosion.
In the case of the second crane, a portion of it was hanging on top of the damaged building once the smoke cleared.
Mayor LaToya Cantrell was at the site and spoke to the media, “We know that we are safer now than we have been in the past eight days,” Mayor LaToya Cantrell said.

Minor damage to the surrounding area occurred according to NOFD Superintendent Timothy McConnell who said, “That one falling crane damaged a sewer line, which the City expected to happen. Three windows were broken at the Saenger Theater. He also stated that the building is still dangerous and the area surrounding the building is still being assessed.

City Councilmember Jason Williams spoke to the media, saying of the detonation, “The cranes came down exactly as it was planned. None of the debris hit the Saenger or the New Orleans Athletic Club. We are waiting to hear from the experts what the next steps are to get first responders in the building to recover the two bodies that are still inside.”

The next step according to Mayor Cantrell is to remove the two victims that are still in the building. She stated that search teams placed a monitor near one of the bodies to assist them in identifying and getting the bodies from out of the rubble.

McConnell said initial assessments suggest both victims remain in the same positions as they were before the demolition. The demolition was designed to make the cranes fall away from the bodies, he said.

“We’re going to have to pull a lot of debris that’s hanging overhead to get to them,” McConnell said. “But we will succeed, trust me.”
After the bodies are recovered, the next step will be “full demolition,” Cantrell said.

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