|Two window cleaners were trapped outside the 10th floor of a 35-storey London City skyscraper.|
Firefighters save window cleaners after being trapped up City skyscraper for hours: Two window cleaners were trapped outside the 10th floor of a 35-storey City skyscraper for hours yesterday afternoon, before being rescued by London Fire Brigade. The men had been cleaning windows at the Undershaft, or St Helen's - formerly known as the Aviva Tower of the Commercial Union building - next to Leadenhall Market.
Three crews worked alongside building management to lower the cradle to the first floor, with the men then being brought down to ground level using an aerial ladder platform. The men were stuck outside the building for "a number of hours prior to the brigade being called,", LFB said, but were not injured. The brigade was called at 4.17pm and the incident was over at 6.16pm. A fire engine from Dowgate fire station, an aerial ladder platform from Greenwich fire station and a fire rescue unit from Islington fire station attended the incident.
Window cleaners left dangling 10 floors up Aviva Tower for hours after 'pulley malfunction' - City workers downed tools to watch a nail-biting rescue operation after two window cleaners were left dangling 10 storeys up the Aviva Tower for hours. The drama unfolded yesterday afternoon in the 35-storey building, official name St Helen's, in St Mary Axe opposite the Gherkin.
The two men, who are familiar faces in the area, got into trouble at about lunchtime when their cradle is believed to have developed a fault. One witness, who works at Costa Coffee in the ground floor of the building, said the men were only able to operate one side of the pulley system – meaning they could change the angle of their box but not its height. “It’s automatic but it got stuck,” she said. “One side was going down but the other was stuck so they could have slipped out of one side.
“We had to close the shop at 5pm but they’d been up there for seven hours. “They had a phone so they were speaking with other people on the ground. They were very high.” The window cleaners, one of whom was thought to be about 18 while the other is an older man, have been signed off work until Monday while they recover, it is believed. “We see them every day,” said the barista. “They come here for a coffee. I don’t know their names but I know what they drink. “Everybody from the building was shocked – everybody just stopped working.”
Three fire crews helped staff in the building lower the faulty cradle down to the first floor where they were rescued by an aerial ladder platform. Neither of them was hurt. The rescue, which began at about 4.15pm after the men had been stuck for a number of hours, lasted until 6.15pm.