Home under construction collapses on man in North Oakland

Thursday, April 2, 2015
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A man survived unscathed after the home he was staying in collapsed on top of him Thursday morning.

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- A home in Oakland collapsed Thursday morning with a man inside.

The incident happened in the 800 block of 46th Street where a contractor was renovating a home.

Short of a miracle, a man crawled out from under the debris of a collapsed home in Oakland. It happened in the 800 block of 46th street where a contractor was renovating a home. It was raised to create a second story.

Crosby "Bubba" Powell, a 68-year-old man, says he was sleeping in the sun room of this house when it collapsed around 11 a.m. His grey blanket marks the spot where he was lying.

"When I went to go grab him, he was just like, 'Oh, I'm all right.' and I said, 'No you're not. Let me help you.' And I kind of pulled him out," said Good Samaritan Dominique Spears.

Powell says he's homeless, but the contractor let him sleep in the vacant house while it was under construction. He says an old TV and some luck kept a wall from crushing him.

"By the grace of God I'm here. Yesterday, I got bit by a pit bull. Today, a house fell on me," he said.

The next-door neighbor's car was damaged, but the neighbor on the other side had his home red-tagged.

"They see a lot of damage, and they told me we had to move out," said Michael Davies, the next-door neighbor.

Part of the collapsed home is leaning on Davies house.

A contractor had raised it to create a second floor. The temporary support columns had been removed and the bottom level was framed out.

"A few people told me just two or three days ago, they were passing by and said, 'Mike, the house is leaning,'" Davies said.

Powell was fortunate to walk away uninjured and now city engineers say they have plenty of questions for the contractor.