Building in East Boston torn down after partial collapse

BOSTON (WHDH) - BOSTON (WHDH) – A vacant building in East Boston was torn down Monday after it partially collapsed over the weekend.

The partial collapse happened at 4 Winthrop Street just before 1 p.m. Sunday, sending bricks and debris crashing down.

Officials had set up a collapse zone in fear that the building would come down on its own, according to Boston Fire Commissioner Joseph Flynn.

Crews successfully demolished the four-story building in Maverick Square around 8:30 a.m.

The building was under construction, but because of the potentially dangerous situation, 28 people in the surrounding area were evacuated from their homes.

“The whole building shook, then our emergency alarms went off,” explained resident Grace Magoon. “When I went to the back of the building, the water was rushing in so I knew something had been hit.”

Businesses in the neighborhood were also closed following the collapse.

“I was just stunned when I came around the corner and realized that essentially the side of the building had collapsed,” said business owner Danilo Avalon.

The electricity and gas were both shut off.

For people living there, they’re just grateful it didn’t happen during the week when it would have been much busier in the area.

“Part of the collapsed went into the back portion of our office; a lot of the debris,” said Danilo.

At this point, it is unclear what caused the partial collapse. Permits are being looked at, but investigators said it could be a long process.

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