NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Most Upper East Side residents are back into their homes after being forced out Wednesday night when construction debris crashed through the roof of their six-story apartment building.

The debris fell from a nearby 30-story condominium building under construction and hit with enough force to penetrate through to the fifth floor of the apartment building around 8:30 p.m., according to the FDNY.

“I grabbed my girlfriend, ran down the stairs and then told people to get out,” said one sixth floor resident who didn’t want to give his name. “It looked like a war zone, it was nuts.”

Tenants from three units had to be relocated unit repairs are complete. No injuries were reported as the entire building was evacuated, reports CBS2’s Lisa Rozner.

“We heard a very loud crash, like a bang, like someone was hitting the building, then we heard people yelling in the hallway,” said resident Blake Crist. “Me and this other woman went up to see if there was someone stuck, and we saw a hole in the ceiling.”

The Department of Buildings issued a stop work order to construction company Hudson Meridian as it investigates. In addition, they’ve issued a violation to the company for failure to safeguard the construction site which carries a $25,000 fine.

Falling construction debris crashed through the roof of a six-story apartment building on the Upper East Side on Jan. 9, 2019. (credit: Department of Buildings)

The DOB’s preliminary investigation determined that part of a 6-inch thick concrete wall fell from the 24th floor of the adjacent construction site at 1059 Third Avenue, and landed on top of the roof of 200 East 63rd Street, falling through the roof and damaging three apartments inside.

A spokesperson for Hudson Meridian told CBS2 the collapse was likely caused by high wind, but local residents was there have been numerous incidents.

“There have been other issues but nothing like this,” said Debra Fechter, owner of the building hit by debris.

In December, a report was made to the DOB about a “townhouse that has a glass roof that is getting hit with construction debris.” Previously in July and August, similar complaints were filed by other neighbors.

The DOB determined the apartment building is structurally stable and not in danger of collapse.

The building owner at 200 East 63rd Street has hired contractors to properly board up the three damaged apartments and clean up the debris.

A spokesperson for the DOB says more violations will be issued once they complete their investigation.


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