Worker falls 7 stories at Bowline Power Plant, Medevac’d to Westchester Medical Center

Firefighters cut through sheet metal, insulation, and 1/4 inch steel to create an opening and extract the victim.

Lisa LaRocca

Feb 7, 2024, 1:28 PM

Updated 168 days ago

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A worker fell seven stories at the Bowline Power Plant in West Haverstraw early this morning and was airlifted to the hospital.
West Haverstraw fire officials received a call around 5 a.m. reporting an injured worker at the plant. As the plant fell under the coverage area of the Thiells Fire Department, both departments collaborated to locate the victim.
Thiells Fire Chief Daniel Coughlin stated that it appeared the worker had fallen from scaffolding into a hopper, which is essentially a giant tube in the plant's ductwork and part of the plant's boiler system.
Police officials mentioned that another worker heard the man fall and hit the bottom, aiding first responders in locating the man, whose name has not yet been released.
Crews evaluated options for reaching the man, considering either repelling down into the hopper or cutting into the tube. Eventually, they decided that breaching the tube was the best approach, though it took some time to accomplish.
"We breached the wall through insulation, through sheet metal, and then eventually through quarter-inch steel to make a hole big enough to pull the victim out," explained Coughlin.
Once accessed, crews found the man breathing. He was then taken by Medevac to Westchester Medical Center, where he is in critical but stable condition.
The Bowline Power Plant supplements the main power source in the area, such as during summer heatwaves to prevent blackouts. Investigators noted that the plant was offline at the time of the accident, with crews performing maintenance work. Police mentioned that the man who fell was not wearing a harness, but it was also not required for the particular type of scaffolding he was using.
OSHA's Tarrytown office was on site investigating the fall.
Interview with fire officials


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