Trial opens for rigger in crane collapse

(AP) - A prosecutor says a crane worker made"inexcusable" choices that caused a 200-foot-tall rig to crash ina Manhattan collapse that killed seven people. But his lawyer saysthe rigger is being blamed for other people's mistakes. William Rapetti's manslaughter trial opened Tuesday inManhattan. It's the first trial stemming from the March 2008distaster, which was one of the nation's deadliest crane accidents. Assistant District Attorney Sean Sullivan says Rapettirecklessly ignored safety standards for polyester straps he used tosecure a six-ton piece of steel on the crane. Prosecutors say thestraps failed and destabilized the crane. Defense lawyer Arthur Aidala says the crane wasn't anchoredproperly to the ground, and the collapse wasn't triggered by thestraps.

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