Worker Burned at New York City Medical Building

June 29, 2009

A worker has suffered burns over most of his body from a small blast and fire at a medical school plant in upper Manhattan.

A Fire Department spokesman says two other workers also were hospitalized with less serious injuries. All three were injured Friday at the New York-Presbyterian/Columbia hospital medical school plant in Washington Heights.

The spokesman says the workers had been cleaning pipes leading to a hot water tank in a mechanical room on the 22nd floor. He says they had been using a diluted alcohol cleanser and a halogen lamp was either turned on or dropped. The interaction with vapors from the cleansing solution, the spokesman says, caused a “flash-over” fire.

Hospital operations were not disrupted.

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