In a freak New York City accident, a man was badly injured after he plunged twelve feet into a vermin-infested cellar when the sidewalk under him collapsed last weekend, according to Channel 29 WVIR NBC News.
A 33-year-old man was waiting for a bus near the intersection of 3rd Avenue and 183rd Street on Saturday, October 24 when in a moment caught on a nearby surveillance video camera, he took a step forward only for the sidewalk to crumble beneath him, sending him dropping into a cellar below the ground. Onlookers rushed to give aid but there was no way for them to reach him given the small hole and space he found himself in.
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According to onlookers and an interview with the man’s brother, the situation was terrifying; the cellar was full of rats and the man was trapped in a tight space, afraid to even yell for fear a rat would get in his mouth. Firefighters from the New York City Fire Department were called to the scene where they were eventually able to extricate him. He was taken to a nearby hospital with injuries including scrapes, lost skin, and damage to an arm and a leg.
The Transportation Department had reportedly issued a sidewalk violation to the owner of the adjacent building years ago, but noted that sidewalk maintenance is the responsibility of the building owner. An inspector has ordered the building vacated and fenced off pending repairs and inspections.