Truck Driver Burned in N.Y. Steam Pipe Blast Sues Con Ed

A tow-truck driver and his passenger burned in last month’s massive steam-pipe explosion in New York City have filed lawsuits against Consolidated Edison, accusing the utility of misconduct.

Gregory McCullough, 21, and Judith Bailey, 30, were riding in the truck when the pipe burst near Grand Central Terminal July 18, causing the ground below them to give way and create a deadly sinkhole.

The truck was sucked into the crater and engulfed in a blanket of 200-degree steam, mud and asbestos that soared stories into the air, sending people fleeing for their lives and rattling the city.

McCullough was taken to New York Presbyterian-Weill Cornell Medical Center burn unit, where he has been placed in a medically induced coma to control his pain and has undergone surgery to remove dead skin. He suffered third-degree burns to more than 80 percent of his body.

Bailey, a mother with two little girls, was also taken to Cornell Medical Center. She suffered burns to about 30 percent of her body but was said to be improving.

The lawsuits, one filed by Bailey and the other by McCullough’s guardian, filed Tuesday in State Supreme Court in Brooklyn seek unspecified damages. Both claim the utility was negligent in allowing the explosion.

Calls to Con Edison were not immediately returned Wednesday.