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2 firemen hurt in probe of blaze near ground zero

August 24, 2007|From Newsday

NEW YORK — A piece of steel equipment was pushed off the 23rd floor of the former Deutsche Bank building Thursday, injuring two firefighters on the ground who were helping with the investigation of a blaze that killed two others there Saturday.

The worker who pushed the pallet lift off an exterior elevator was an employee of the John Galt Corp., the subcontractor that has been cited for numerous code violations in the building. The skyscraper was abandoned because of heavy damage sustained when part of the World Trade Center collapsed into it on Sept. 11, 2001.

The firm had been given five days' notice of its termination Wednesday, but workers were told to get out immediately after the latest incident, said Errol Cockfield, a spokesman for the Lower Manhattan Development Corp., which owns the building.

Firefighter William Corbetis was in serious condition and firefighter Neil Nally in stable condition Thursday night, according to fire officials. Both firefighters, of Engine 258, were expected to survive their injuries.

The two were helping with the Fire Department investigation of the blaze that killed Joseph Graffagnino, 33, and Robert Beddia, 53. Graffagnino was buried Thursday in Brooklyn.

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