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Con Ed Worker Seriously Burned in the Face on UWS Job

By  Andrea Swalec and Amy Zimmer | July 4, 2012 2:29pm 

UPPER WEST SIDE — A Con Edison worker was rushed to the hospital in serious condition after being burned on the face on Wednesday afternoon, officials said.

The worker was in a volt compartment, which is similar to a manhole, at 154 W. 70th St. about 1 p.m., when "he received a flash to the face," a Con Edison spokeswoman said said.

The man was taken to New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center in serious but stable condition, FDNY officials said.

"I saw an explosion and smoke," said John Corry, 47, a construction worker, who was nearby at the time of the incident. "A guy came out of the manhole with red burns on his face."

Con Edison officials did not immediately have information on the worker's identity or how long he has worked for the utility company.

Roughly 8,500 Con Ed workers have been locked out of the job since contract talks broke down on Sunday.

Union officials have said the situation would be a recipe for disaster, especially during such hot times.

"Con Edison Chairman Kevin Burke is playing a dangerous game of chicken with the public and has a disaster in the making if he forces a work disruption and the system goes down," union president Harry Farrell said last week.

Talks are expected to resume Thursday.