The twin cranes swaying above the Hard Rock Hotel collapse site in New Orleans are scheduled to be imploded sometime on Friday (10/18).

The two-tower cranes have begun to sway, and with the possibility of tropical storm force winds in the gulf south this weekend, the decision was made to take down the cranes as soon as possible.

"These towers...are dramatically damaged," New Orleans Fire Department Chief Timothy McConnell said yesterday. "The rear tower moved four inches overnight, and the one in the front moved two inches. They are not designed to do that."

The primary concern is that the cranes will fall onto the collapsed building, potentially causing more loss of life and further property damage.

The primary goal of the controlled demolition is to make the cranes "melt" right in place through the strategic use of small explosives.

The company in charge of the demolition also successfully demolished the remains of the building damaged in the Oklahoma City bombing as well as several heavily damaged buildings around the World Trade Center site.

"Just the top of that tower, just the very top, the part across the 'T' at the top, is 145,000 pounds," McConnell said. "This is not an easy thing, but they truly believe they can drop them right there."

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