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MTA suspends construction in area of worker rescue

Officers of the New York City police Emergency

Officers of the New York City police Emergency Services Unit, covered in mud and dirt, walk to a waiting bus to warm up after securing the rescue of a construction worker trapped underground at an MTA subway construction project in New York. (March 20, 2013) Photo Credit: AP

The MTA has suspended construction below Second Avenue where a worker was rescued from a pit of thick mud Tuesday.

About 150 firefighters helped rescue the worker -- identified by a source as Joseph Barone of EE Cruz Heavy Construction -- who had become stuck in mud beneath Second Avenue and 95th Street around 8:30 p.m. Work is being done on the future T subway line in the area.

Kevin Ortiz, an MTA spokesman, said the accident will undergo a review to ensure it doesn't occur again.

"We have commenced an investigation with the contractor to determine the circumstances of the incident in terms of what happened and why it happened," Ortiz said.

The rescue lasted until about 1:30 a.m., an FDNY spokesman said. Barrone was taken to NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center, where he was treated for hypothermia and bruising. Firefighters used a pole to get a rope under the stuck worker's arms and carefully extracted him from the mud, which was watered down during the rescue. He was freed with the help of a high-pressure air compressor.

Barone, in an interview with WCBS, said he always knew he would be fine and never panicked. Barone's wife, Candida, told WNBC/4 that her husband was in "good" condition. She said Barone was securing an overhead crane when he fell into the pit, NBC reported.

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