Rescuers pull woman from rubble of collapsed building

Posted: Updated:
Photo credit: @slimty86 on Instagram Photo credit: @slimty86 on Instagram

A building collapsed in Poughkeepsie Monday afternoon, trapping a woman in her first-floor dress boutique for more than four hours, according to police.

They say the vacant seven-story apartment building at 17 Academy St. crumbled just after 4 p.m.

Part of it fell on a three-story apartment building next door, 15 Academy St. That building fell too, trapping Rotanya Hargrove in the ground-level shop.

Fire Chief Mark Johnson said Hargrove was awake and alert while rescuers tried to reach her.  Initially, she was buried up to her waist in bricks and other debris. After several hours of work, her right leg remained pinned under a heavy object.

An ambulance was ready to take her to the hospital as soon as firefighters pulled her free.

In all, more than 150 emergency responders converged on the scene. Several firefighters were also hospitalized for heat exhaustion.

Johnson said a storm rolling through the area contributed to the collapse -- which spewed bricks and debris out into the street.

Hargrove's friends say she's still in the hospital recovering from her injuries  Three firefighters suffered minor injuries during the rescue, but they are all out of the hospital.

Officials say at least 10 families living nearby were displaced. They are not being allowed back into their homes until the buildings are secure. 

Crews say they will return Wednesday to tear down three floors of the other building. They say it’s a complicated process that could take several days.

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