The video begins with a man straddled on a fifth-floor ledge—a worker doing construction in an empty 172nd Street apartment. Smoke pours from the window. Neighbors on the fire escape adjacent are waving a ladder in the man's direction, but the ladder is not at all secure and looks quite plainly like a terrible option. The man on the ledge is between a rock and a hard place, or rather, a fire and a janky-ass ladder place. The neighbors are visibly distressed at their shortcomings as ladder-wielders. They retract the ladder. The smoke billows harder. There is lots of shouting.
At this point, a neighbor—the real hero in this saga—comes forward, swinging down from an above fire escape and marching fearlessly across the ladder. He grabs the man, still clinging to his ledge, and guides him toward it. His feet connect. He's free! Onlookers erupt in cheers. But it's not over yet—both the man and his rescuer must navigate back across the shaky ladder.
Tags: Fire, Washington heights, rescue, ladder, good ladders make good neighbors
Location: New York, New York, United States (load item map)
Marked as: featured
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