Seattle crane collapse
Site of the collapse, seen two days later
|Date||April 27, 2019|
|Location||Mercer Street and Fairview Avenue, Seattle, Washington, United States|
On April 27, 2019, at approximately 3:28 p.m. Pacific Time, a construction crane working on a Google office building in Seattle, Washington, United States, collapsed onto Mercer Street, killing four people and injuring four others. The crane, which was being dismantled, fell across the street and its median, crushing six cars near the Fairview Avenue intersection. It also damaged the building's roof and eastern facade. Two of the four victims were ironworkers, while two—a college student and a former city administrator—were in vehicles on the street.
Several strong gusts of wind were reported in the area, including one recorded at a speed of 23 miles per hour (37 km/h) at the time of the collapse, and has been theorized as a factor in the collapse. The collapse was captured in a dashcam video that was posted online the day after the accident, showing the perspective from westbound Mercer Street.
Seattle has undergone a construction boom since the Great Recession, tallying 60 cranes in early 2019—the most in one city in the United States at the time. The last local crane incident to include fatalities occurred in November 2006 during construction of the Expedia Building in Bellevue, which killed one person in a nearby building. As a result, Washington adopted laws to enforce stricter crane safety policies, including enhanced operator certification and training.
The Washington State Department of Labor and Industries began an investigation into the incident, with cooperation from developer Vulcan, Inc., the City of Seattle, and general contractor GLY Construction. The collapse's cause remains unknown, but outside investigators speculated that the improper removal of pins and bolts during disassembly was a potential cause. Mercer Street remained shut down for the weekend and re-opened on Monday morning, following removal of the crane and debris to a nearby lot.
- 2008 New York City crane collapse – a similar accident which resulted in seven fatalities and dozens of injuries
- Mecca crane collapse – the deadliest crane collapse in recorded history
- Bush, Evan; Shapiro, Nina (April 27, 2019). "Fallen crane kills four in South Lake Union: 'It was terrifying'". The Seattle Times. Retrieved April 27, 2019.
- Sailor, Craig (April 27, 2019). "Four dead after construction crane collapses onto busy Seattle street". The News Tribune. Retrieved April 27, 2019.
- Green, Sara Jean; Miletich, Steve; Kamb, Lewis (April 29, 2019). "Former Seattle employee, North Bend ironworker among victims of crane collapse". The Seattle Times. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
- Weise, Karen (April 28, 2019). "Seattle Eyes Its Crane-Filled Skyline After a Deadly Accident". The New York Times. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
- Guevara (April 29, 2019). "Dash cam video shows moment crane falls from building in Seattle's South Lake Union". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Retrieved May 11, 2019.
- Baumann, Lisa (April 28, 2019). "'Terrifying': Crane falls on busy Seattle street, killing 4". The Washington Post. Associated Press. Retrieved April 27, 2019.
- Rosenberg, Mike (April 27, 2019). "Seattle's cranes kept coming — and until now, operated safely". The Seattle Times. Retrieved April 27, 2019.
- Gutman, David; Groover, Heidi; Gilbert, Daniel (April 28, 2019). "Investigators open probe into four companies involved in dismantling Seattle crane before deadly collapse". The Seattle Times. Retrieved April 28, 2019.
- "Investigation into deadly Seattle crane collapse could take half a year". KING 5 News. April 27, 2019. Retrieved April 27, 2019.
- Lam, Kristin (April 29, 2019). "Deadly Seattle crane collapse was likely caused by human error, experts say". USA Today. Associated Press. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
- Gutman, David (May 13, 2019). "What caused Seattle crane to collapse? Experts say a common practice is likely cause". The Seattle Times. Retrieved May 13, 2019.
- Guevara, Natalie (April 29, 2019). "South Lake Union streets, including Mercer, reopened after crane fell Saturday in Seattle". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Retrieved May 1, 2019.
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