December 2, 2013 |
For days, the workers at the Salvation Army thrift shop on Market Street said, they heard noises from outside and above. "Like a giant mouse running down the wall," assistant manager Richard Stasiorowski testified. "Every day, at some point, we would hear something. " "All of us would say, 'Oh, my God,' " manager Margarita Agosto said. " 'Imagine if this falls on us.' " But they did not alert the demolition crew next door or their Salvation Army supervisor. They said he already knew.
December 2, 2013 |
Like many people this time of year, Ardmore resident Betty-Jane Stoeckle is feeling a bit overwhelmed - not, in her case, by the arrival of the holiday season, but by the daily onslaught of charity solicitations. Stoeckle welcomes at least some of the pitches. A retired Germantown High School English teacher, she is a regular, cheerful giver to groups as diverse as the American Red Cross, the Salvation Army, Philabundance, Habitat for Humanity, and the Southern Poverty Law Center. But she doesn't like making assumptions, especially when it comes to the dozens of other requests her generosity attracts - a small fraction of more than a million nonprofits that competed for more than $316 billion in donations last year, according to Giving USA. "I'd like my money to be well-spent," Stoeckle says.
September 19, 2013 |
PHILADELPHIA Speaking publicly for the first time since they lost their daughter, Anne, in the Market Street building collapse in June, city Treasurer Nancy Winkler and her husband, John Bryan, called Tuesday for the city to convene a panel of nationally recognized experts to conduct a top-to-bottom review of the Department of Licenses and Inspections. "We believe an independent blue-ribbon panel of national safety experts . . . should look at what happened and fully evaluate what system should be in place . . . so that in the future, citizens of the city of Philadelphia can feel confident, when they walk the streets and enter buildings, that they will be safe," Winkler told reporters.
September 9, 2013 |
SOME PEOPLE in City Hall are saying that city Treasurer Nancy Winkler must be "out of her mind with grief" over the death of her daughter, Anne Bryan, 24. Otherwise she wouldn't do what no other city employee who serves at the mayor's behest would be reckless enough to do: She has started an online petition that drops a gauntlet at her boss' feet. Specifically, Winkler's petition on change.org calls on Mayor Nutter, City Council President Darrell Clarke and the Salvation Army to fund a memorial park at the southeast corner of 22nd and Market streets.
September 5, 2013 |
THE SALVATION ARMY knew that its Market Street thrift store was already unstable and could collapse due to demolition work planned next door - but did nothing to prevent the eventual June collapse, according to a wrongful-death lawsuit filed yesterday by the family of a woman who died in the rubble. Mary Lea Simpson, 24, was among six people who died June 5 when the thrift store at 22nd and Market streets was crushed by the falling wall of a building being demolished next door. An additional 13 were trapped but survived.
August 21, 2013 |
THE WOMAN whose legs were amputated after being trapped for 13 hours beneath rubble from the Market Street building collapse filed a lawsuit yesterday, claiming several parties ignored signs of the impending danger. Mariya Plekan, 52, of Hunting Park, was shopping at the Salvation Army store when a three-story wall fell onto the store the morning of June 5. Firefighters pulled Plekan from under the debris shortly before midnight. The suit says that, as a result of the catastrophe, Plekan's entire lower body has been removed.
August 16, 2013 |
INSTEAD OF HEEDING written warnings of a potentially catastrophic collapse, the Salvation Army played "a dangerous game of chicken" with the owner of a building being demolished next door, an attorney said yesterday. The collapse on June 5 killed six and injured 14 who were inside the Salvation Army's thrift shop at 22nd and Market streets. So attorney Robert Mongeluzzi, citing emails among the city, the demolition-site owner and the Salvation Army that showed the charity was warned of dangerous conditions, said yesterday that he would add the Salvation Army as a defendant in litigation seeking civil damages.
July 19, 2013
SEPTA released video-surveillance footage yesterday from its Route 31 bus that captured the June 5 building collapse at 22nd and Market streets that killed six people and injured 14. The video shows the four-story wall crashing onto the adjacent Salvation Army thrift store at 10:41 a.m. as the bus, traveling east on Market Street, pulled up to the intersection. People scrambled away and cars sped off as a cloud of dust expanded, but some people soon started running toward the building.
July 18, 2013 |
Philadelphia Deputy Mayor and Commerce Director Alan Greenberger acknowledged Tuesday that he did not alert city building inspectors after he was warned in May of potentially dangerous developments at a Center City demolition site. Within an hour of receiving that warning, Greenberger said, he got another e-mail suggesting the problems were being resolved. In a brief statement released by Mayor Nutter's press office, Greenberger confirmed a report in The Inquirer last weekend that at 4:54 p.m. May 22, he received an e-mail from Thomas J. Simmonds Jr., property manager for STB Investments Corp.
July 15, 2013 |
In the weeks before the deadly Market Street collapse, the building's owner repeatedly warned top city officials and Salvation Army officials that the demolition could endanger the adjacent Salvation Army thrift store. But that did not prompt the city to step in. Nor did it stop the owner from rapidly demolishing the building - with devastating consequences. E-mails and letters reviewed by The Inquirer show repeated warnings about a possible collapse with potentially deadly results.