Man climbs atop Bethlehem blast furnace, prompting concert evacuation |

Man climbs atop Bethlehem blast furnace, prompting concert evacuation

Samson X Horne

Authorities say a man climbed to the top of a blast furnace in Bethlehem, Pa. and refused to come down, prompting evacuation of a nearby arts and entertainment venue.

Venue operator ArtsQuest tweeted Saturday that the “emergency situation” that began Friday night at the SteelStacks campus was still going on, hours later.

An outdoor concert had been scheduled but about 1,500 people were evacuated after the man climbed up the furnace shortly before 7 p.m. Friday and perched several hundred feet above the venue, The Associated Press reported.

According to The Morning Call, the man was shouting, and outstretched his arms periodically, as he balanced precariously on a single beam as high on the structure as he could go.

The Allentown newspaper also reported that it was hard to understand what the man was saying at times. However, some words and phrases were clear: “traitor,” “my hometown,” and “I do not fear.” He also counted down “three, two, one,” after shouting what sounded like “anarchy.”

Police released a photo and asked the public’s help in identifying the man, who balanced precariously on a single steel beam at Bethlehem Steel Corp.

Police officers climbed to a platform below the man and were talking to him. They said he is in an “very unsafe spot,” according to a news release.

The SteelStacks campus remained closed.

Samson X Horne is a Tribune-Review digital producer. You can contact Samson at 412-320-7845, [email protected] or via Twitter .

Categories: News | Pennsylvania
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