Crane collapses as winds howl in South Florida

Miami Beach Mayor In His Office As Hurricane Irma Lashes Florida

Many are questioning why the cranes can't be moved, Miami officials said Tuesday in a tweet.

It wasn't immediately clear whether either collapse caused damage or injuries, CNBC reported.

In Miami, Jackson Health System alerted women who are at least 34 weeks pregnant or who have a high-risk pregnancy that they may take shelter in one of three of its hospitals, as long as they have registered with the hospital in advance. Here in Miami, our Alex Perez was with one of those crews securing one of those massive cranes.

A second crane collapse was later reported at a building under construction on Northeast 30th Terrace. Maurice Pons, deputy director of the city's building department, said in a statement then that he "would not advise" riding out the storm near one of the cranes.

City officials last week said that the cranes could not be tied down or moved.

The National Hurricane Centre said Irma's winds were at 177 km/h, just below major hurricane status, as the centre of the still unsafe and wide storm moved farther inland late today.

Although it is likely that the eye will move near or over the Lower Keys Sunday morning, its angle of approach to the west coast of Florida makes it hard to pinpoint exactly where Irma will cross the Florida Gulf Coast. Gusts over 90 miles per hour (145 kph) were reported at Miami International Airport.

The boom of the crane snapped off and is now still connected to the tower, but is hanging off the side of the building.

Whiteman said videos of the first collapse posted on social media showed a tower crane that appeared to have lost its jib or boom, though its mast was still standing.

Even without bearing its full force down on Miami, Irma turned Brickell into a new environment, complete with rivers and wind-whipped waves.

Without the arms and counterbalances, only the cranes' towers would have been left standing, and those are extremely strong, Mr. Barth said on Sunday.


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