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Window washer has close call Wednesday morning, almost falls five stories

Updated: Wednesday, September 25 2013, 06:38 PM CDT
Reported by: Donna Kirker Morgan

HARRISBURG -- A window washer was rescued Wednesday morning after slipping off his riggings and holding onto a safety line for dear life five stories above Second Street.

Michael St. Pierre was just starting his work this morning at the Penn National Insurance building when the accident happened.

“I just didn’t get my butt on the seat,” he told CBS 21.

Across the street at the Hilton Hotel, Mark Hertzog called 911 and watched in horror. Other people began to stop and watched as St. Pierre tried to figure out how to get out the predicament.

“Pretty scary though, quite interesting feeling you get when you see someone falling from a building,” Hertzog said.

But the people on the ground would have another scare. After holding his position for a few minutes, St. Pierre fell more than 10 feet down the safety line.

Another passerby who did not want to be named said you could hear the crowd gasp. St. Pierre was left hanging on the rope by a foot.

“It was frightening it was loud and you reaction of the people told story itself everyone thought he was a goner but rope stopped him again,” he said.

Harrisburg Fire brought in its 75-foot bucket truck and it just reached him. St. Pierre  was checked out at the hospital but was not hurt. On the phone, he told CBS 21 it was his recent safety training that kept him as calm as possible as he waited for this rescue.

Fire crews said that if they couldn’t have rescued him with the bucket truck they were ready to rappel from the roof to get to him.

St. Pierre said he offered to go back to work but his employer, Performance Services Incorporated, decided to keep his feet on the ground for the rest of the day. 

Window washer has close call Wednesday morning, almost falls five stories

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