Students on Cross Campus Saturday afternoon were shocked when a young man on a bike crashed over the ledge surrounding a stairway to Cross Campus Library and plummeted down to the stone base of the stairs.
Yale Police said the 22-year-old Caucasian man is not a Yale student but declined to identify him. Students who were in CCL and on Cross Campus at the time of the incident said the man had been doing tricks on his bike above CCL, next to the Berkeley College South Court.
“The guy was there with a couple of his friends and was hopping his bike up on the wall that people sit on outside CCL and then balancing it there,” Jesse Pizarro ’06 said. “He overshot it and went over the edge.”
The man was taken from the scene of the accident to Yale-New Haven Hospital. The hospital and University Police declined to comment on the man’s condition over the weekend.
Students, including Pizarro, reported hearing a loud thud and seeing the man lying face-down in a pool of blood. Students and workers called 911 and police, fire and ambulance crews arrived within minutes at the scene. Diane Dudar, who works at the security desk in CCL, said she saw the young man through the window and called 911.
“There were tons of people,” she said. “He landed face down and blood was coming out of his mouth.”
Students inside the library reported the man was on a “trick bike,” a bike with a longer frame and smaller wheels. Sam Cecil ’06 was doing work inside CCL and observed the accident through the glass windows, and said they heard a loud noise right before he landed outside.
“I heard him hitting the railing,” Cecil said. “We looked over when we heard the huge bang.”
Cecil said students rushed down the stairs to attend to the man before paramedics arrived. Dudar said the landing quickly became packed with students watching police and EMTs arrive.
Pizarro said the man was still conscious and was able to move slightly when approached by EMT workers. This incident has caused some to question the safety of the ledge outside CCL, which is often a coveted study location for students on sunny spring days. The ledge is very narrow, Dudar said, and students often place themselves precariously close to the edge.
“Students often lie down on the ledge”, she said. “If they were to make one false move, they could definitely fall.”
Dudar said she could not recall another incident of anyone falling from the ledges above the CCL stairways in recent years.
A limited portion of the ledge surrounding the CCL stairwell into which the man fell is protected by a low metal railing.