2008_06_crackedcrane.jpgThe Department of Buildings confirmed to the Daily News that it found cracks in a crane at a construction site in lower Manhattan. The crane happens to be a Kodiak tower crane owned by New York Crane & Equipment Co.--the same model and firm involved last month's fatal crane collapse at East 91st Street and First Avenue.

Cracks were found in the crane's turntable; the crane in the May collapse also suffered from cracking (it was also hit by lightning) but was repaired. The Kodiak tower crane is an older, discontinued model, and all similar models were immediately prohibited from being used at sites after the May collapse.

While the DOB told the News the cracks weren't compromising "structural integrity," the crane will be dismantled this weekend. Acting DOB Commissioner Robert LiMandri said, "We want to err on the side of caution."

And yesterday, the owner of 1749 First Avenue, an apartment building hit by the crane, is suing New York Crane & Equipment Co., the crane operator, general contractor and owner of the 1765 First Avenue construction site for $100 million, citing "recklessness, carelessness and negligence." 1749 sustained considerable damage.

Photograph of a worker inspecting the turntable of the East 91st Street crane that collapsed on May 30 by Bebeto Matthews/AP