AUSTIN (KXAN) — A man who climbed a construction crane on South Congress Avenue Monday morning is now in police custody.
38-year old Cameron Greer was charged with criminal mischief and trespassing.
It took about three hours for Austin Police to coax him down from the 150-foot tall crane at 1221 S. Congress Avenue.
The Austin Fire Department along with Austin-Travis County EMS were initially dispatched to the scene.
There was a small fire within the construction site that authorities say started in two different places. Firefighters quickly put it out.
APD took over the scene after the man began throwing things from the top of the crane. They expanded the perimeter around the crane as a safety precaution.
“He stayed up there for three hours throwing water bottles, shackles, grease guns, inspection forms,” said Floyd Ray, who works at a neighboring construction site.
Around 8:30 a.m. the man climbed down and was taken into custody. All lanes on South Congress Avenue were reopened.
Gilbane is the builder for the site. A spokesperson for the company says there were multiple security measures in place, and that it was not easy for anyone to access the construction area or crane.
Police are still trying to determine how Greer got inside.
“One area was open, but we can’t tell if he broke it open or if it was inadvertently left open,” said Sgt. Mark Breckinridge.
Digging deeper, KXAN found that contractors have a general obligation at the local, state and federal level to keep workers safe, but we couldn’t find any requirements for site security.
“If somebody wanted to, they’re going to get in there,” said Ray. “And even if they had the wall around there, if somebody wants to get on that crane, they’ll get on it.”