Worker left dangling from Key Biscayne building thanks rescuers

KEY BISCAYNE, FLA. (WSVN) - The construction worker who ended up dangling from a building in Key Biscayne after his scaffolding collapsed last week got the opportunity to thank the first responders who came to his aid, as they shared their account of the tense ordeal.

Marcus Perdomo spent an hour about 12 stories up in the air on the side of the Grand Bay Tower condominium, Thursday afternoon. Three days later, he got a chance to express his gratitude to his rescuers in person.

“Thanks to all of you,” said Perdomo in Spanish as he shook the hands of two of the crew members involved in what turned out to be an intricate rescue operation.

Miami Fire Rescue Firefighter Miguel Perez said they were just doing their job. “It’s exactly what you train for: to get everybody down safely,” he said.

Officials said the scaffolding Perdomo was working on suddenly gave way. His harness was the only thing that stopped him from falling to the ground.

“He was really thinking the worst,” said Robert Campos with Key Biscayne Fire Rescue. “Through constant communication with myself and one of the other lieutenants who were there, we were able to at least liven him up.”

7News cameras showed members of Miami Fire Rescue’s special response team carefully rappelling down the side of the building as they got closer and closer to Perdomo.

One firefighter who was feet away from the team member who secured Perdomo was able to record cellphone video of the tense rescue.

“The wind was a major factor in this rescue, so I had a feeling it was going to be a little tough,” said Miami Fire Rescue Firefighter Timothy Gleason.

Crews managed to strap the worker up, and two team members rappelled down with him.

After the dangerous day on the job, crews put Perdomo into a Key Biscayne Fire Rescue ambulance to be evaluated. Paramedics later transported him to Jackson Memorial Hospital, and he was released on Friday.

Marcus Perdomo

Holding up an honorary firefighter badge, Perdomo said he’s ready to go back to work. “In the end, it’s my job, and I have to do it. I don’t know how my boss will react to this,” he said through a translator.

But his children were less enthusiastic, saying they’re more nervous now about what can happen on the job. “I’m disagreeing. He should not go back to work,” said his son in Spanish, “but I can’t force him to not work.”

Another of Perdomo’s sons was nevertheless thankful his father took the proper safety precautions. “I am very grateful for the firefighters who helped and did their job,” he said.

One of Perdomo’s sons was on the ground and working with his father at the time of the incident.

Copyright 2018 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.