A scary scene was captured on video Saturday morning in New Orleans showing the Hard Rock Hotel on Canal Street collapsing onto the road. Storyful
The construction of a Hard Rock hotel on Canal Street in New Orleans’ French Quarter collapsed Saturday morning.
In a press conference posted to Facebook, New Orleans fire superintendent Tim McConnell confirmed one person died and three people are missing. New Orlean’s Emergency Medical Services director Emily Nichols confirmed 19 people were evaluated for injuries, 18 of which were transported to the hospital and are in stable condition. One person refused to be transported.
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, who was in New Orleans for election day, also commented on the incident.
“This is a serious collapse. We’re praying for the individuals who are unaccounted for,” he said.
The New Orleans Fire Department arrived on the scene at 9:12 a.m. CDT shortly after the collapse.
Video provided to local CBS-affiliated television station WWL-TV shows the moments when the building’s frame fell several stories in the air to the street. The video shows several people running from the collapse.
Warning: Viewers may find the following video disturbing.
Welder David Hensley was inside the building working when he heard a loud noise, “like a train or an earthquake,” he told The Daily Advertiser, which is part of the USA TODAY network.
As the floors began collapsing, Hensley said he leapt to a scaffolding to escape.
“I go to the side and just see the building collapse and just start hitting floors to floors going down. I had to run out there, run to the back of the building trying to get myself safe. Jumped to the next floor and climbed down the scaffolding,” Hensley said. “I saw the levels collapse, 18 all the way to 7… It’s mind boggling.”
Officials said it’s not yet known what caused the collapse. McConnell said the top six to eight floors are heavily damaged and authorities are working to determine if the construction site was up to code and had been properly inspected.
As of 11:30 a.m. CDT, authorities said the building remains unstable and further collapses were possible. There was also fear that one of the two giant cranes on the hotel could fall. After the building’s structure crumbled, it’s no longer supported.
“Our biggest fear right now is the crane. It’s 270-foot and it could come down with a tremendous amount of weight,” McConnell said.
The hotel was expected to open in the spring, according to The Associated Press.
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