The lives of two New York City window washers were hanging in the balance as they were trapped on a scaffolding located at 1 World Trade Center for an hour on Wednesday afternoon.
New York Daily News confirmed that the shaky scaffolding suspended around the 69th floor was discovered dangling at an unsafe and unstable angle, according to several images taken at the scene of the incident that have been released online.
Local fire crews were able to cut through a window that was 68 stories up from the ground and pulled the two window washers to safety.
— FDNY (@FDNY) November 12, 2014
MAN ALL HANDS 1 WORLD TRADE CENTER, HIGH RISE (WORLD TRADE CENTER) SCAFFOLDING EMERGENCY, UNDER CONTROL — FDNY (@FDNY) November 12, 2014
According to New York Daily News, the FDNY also sent down a second scaffold in addition to breaking through the glass window as a secondary rescue effort.
NBC News reports that the two window washers were heading towards the top of the tower when one of the motorized cables that supported the scaffolding came loose somehow.
During the time that they were trapped, both of the window washers remained secured in their harnesses.
John Miller, a NYPD counter-terrorism czar, confirmed earlier on Wednesday that the workers were dangling at an angle of 65 degrees.
While giving his testimony at a City Council hearing, Miller spoke briefly about the incident involving the two window washers.
“Ironically, as we sit here talking about the coordination between agencies and emergency management in the city of New York, at the World Trade Center on the 69th floor, two workers are dangling at a 65-degree angle after the scaffolding partially collapsed.”
Miller also acknowledged that the NYPD, the FDNY, the Office of Emergency Management and the Port Authority were all working together to resolve the issue and save these unidentified workers whose lives were “very literally and figuratively hanging in the balance.”
The 1,776-foot skyscraper in Lower Manhattan just opened last week. It currently holds the record as the tallest structure in the United States of America. The Willis Tower (also referred to as the Sears Tower) now holds the second-place spot on this list with a height of 1,451 feet.
1 World Trade Center currently ranks as the fourth tallest building in the world and is listed directly after the 1,971 ft. tall Makkah Royal Clock Tower Hotel in Mecca, Saudi Arabia.