UPDATE: Crane tips over at Federal Courthouse construction site - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

UPDATE: Crane tips over at Federal Courthouse construction site


CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) -- A crane working on the construction site of the new Federal Courthouse in Downtown Cedar Rapids collapsed at around 11:10 a.m. this morning.

According to the Cedar Rapids Fire Department, the 550-ton crane was being used to set-up a larger crane for the construction of the courthouse when it encountered unleveled ground, causing the collapse.

Ryan Companies issued a statement saying that the crane damaged one corner of the guard shack, nearly missing a security officer inside.  The crane also landed on one corner of the construction office and two construction trucks.

The Cedar Rapids Fire Department says the crane just missed a guard inside the guard shack and says that six people were in a conference room inside the construction office.

"If it was just a few feet in a different direction, we would have had a different outcome. I think a lot of people are going to go home tonight and think about how lucky we were," said Greg Buelow, Public Information Officer with the Cedar Rapids Fire Department.

The crane operator was uninjured in the accident.  There were between 50 and 60 employees on-site at the time of the accident, no one was injured. The fire department used some absorbent material to mitigate some diesel and hydraulic fluid that leaked from the collapsed crane.

The crane was being operated by workers from Dawes Rigging and Crane Rental of Wisconsin. 

Ryan Companies says they will cooperate with investigators and review the incident to check safety procedures.

They say construction will resume once the investigation is complete.

The new courthouse is being built on the corner of 8th Avenue and 1st Street SE next to the Downtown YMCA.

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