What to Know
- Work on the Bayonne Bridge on Staten Island is sending debris falling down in Port Richmond, neighbors say
- Slabs of concrete, wood and bolts have been falling down on cars, damaging them and has neighbors worried for their safety
- The Port Authority said the demolition is on hold and talks are going on to determine a proper course of action moving forward
It’s raining debris on Staten Island.
Port Richmond neighbors say small pieces of wood, cement powder and bolts have been falling from above because crews are working on the Bayonne Bridge, but Monday seemed to be the worst many have seen yet.
“I can’t believe it happened, it was only a matter of time,” John Ortiz, of Port Richmond, said. “If it's going to put a dent into a car, God forbid what it would've done to me.”
The Bayonne Bridge project consists of demolishing the old one and building the new one. But lately people said chunks of concrete and shattered glass are flying down onto their heads and onto Newark Avenue below. That work has been suspended, according to the Port Authority.
The Port Authority says just before 10 a.m. Monday, a contractor was demolishing a pier when a chunk of concrete fell to the street below, damaging three cars.
“They dropped stones from the tip of the bridge in the demo,” said Vaughn Bellocchio, owner of Polishing Pad, an auto body shop. “They busted a bunch of holes in the cars.”
Ortiz is so fed up he said it is just another day in the neighborhood.
“We have bolts that fall down and that just rain from the sky,” Ortiz said.
Ortiz snapped pictures of the damage and video of the cleanup. It shows crews working on the bridge back on June 9th.
Now the demolition is on hold, Port Authority said.
“We are currently undertaking a full evaluation of today’s incident with our contractor to learn exactly what happened and to determine a proper course of action moving forward," Steve Coleman of Port Authority said in a statement.
The Port Authority will meet with the contractor before picking up the demolition and is also working with the owners of the damaged cars to fix them.
“I got my daughter with me and she’s six months old and I definitely fear for her life,” Ortiz said.