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Scaffold collapse man phoned wife

A window washer left dangling from the nation's tallest skyscraper called his wife during the ordeal, fearful that it might be his last opportunity to speak to her.

Investigators are looking into the collapse of a World Trade Centre scaffold that left two window men dangling from 1 World Trade Centre.

The workers were trapped 68 storeys above the street when a cable suddenly developed slack.

The workers held on to the teetering platform for two hours.

Firefighters used diamond cutters to saw through a double-layered window and pulled the men to safety.

The dramatic rescue, coming a little more than a week after the building officially opened, was followed by throngs of New Yorkers watching from the ground and many more around the world watching on live TV.

The window washers, Juan Lizama and Juan Lopez, were working on the south side of the lower Manhattan building when one of the platform's four cables abruptly gave way. The open-topped platform tilted sharply and swayed slightly between the 68th and 69th floors.

Officials have not determined what caused the cable problem.

It was unclear whether anything about the design of the 1,776-foot (540-metre), 104-story skyscraper complicates working on the window washing scaffolds, which went into service in June.

The silvery 3.9 billion US dollar skyscraper that rose from the ashes of the September 11 2001 terror attack, opened last week to 175 employees of magazine publisher Conde Nast. Steps away are two memorial fountains built on the footprints of the decimated twin towers, a reminder of the more than 2,700 people who died in the attack.


From Belfast Telegraph