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Falling Air Conditioner Hits Woman in Manhattan

The 28-year-old New York City school teacher got 20 stitches for the injuries

A falling air conditioner hit a Manhattan woman walking on the sidewalk, splitting open part of her leg, cutting her elbow, and scraping and bruising her arm, she said.

Chloe Pinkerton, a 28-year-old New York City high school teacher, was walking with her boyfriend south on Lexington Avenue near East 100th Street Sunday night when she said something hit her in the head.

She fell to the ground, and then she saw blood everywhere.

"It looked like hamburger meat, it was disgusting," she said.

A window air conditioning unit had fallen from the sixth floor, right between her and her boyfriend. A man who identified himself as a guest in the apartment rushed down.

He told Pinkerton's boyfriend that he saw the air conditioner start to fall and went to try and catch it, but wasn't able to. 

"It's crazy," said Pinkerton. "One of us could have died so easily." 

Pinkerton was taken to New York-Presbyterian Hospital, where she received 20 stitches in her leg and another in her elbow. 

The Department of Buildings said property owners must ensure air conditioning units installed on buildings six stories or higher are supported by a bracket.

A representative from the building's management company said in a statement that the "tenant was removing the air conditioner and lost control," even though the man who came down to see Pinkerton said he was a guest, not a tenant. 

The management company representative added that it hasn't been able to get in touch with the tenant in the apartment because they were "away or not responding." 

The injury couldn't have come at a worse time for Pinkerton, who's been training the last four months for the New York City Marathon. 

"I'm sad that's not going to happen," she said, but added that it could have been a lot worse.

"It so easily could have been inches further and I very easily couldn't have been here," she said. "I feel very grateful." 

Follow Marc Santia on Twitter @MarcSantia4NY

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