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3 injured in crane accident at Cowboys stadium in Arlington

Equipment being used to lift a section of a crane at the Cowboys stadium construction site malfunctioned about 2 p.m. Thursday and injured three workers, one critically.

The section of the crane was on the ground when the accident happened, said Manhattan Construction representative Keith Cooper.

The men were using equipment to raise a section of the crane when a cable snapped, Cooper said. The men were on top of the crane's cab and jumped to avoid falling parts and suffered injuries, according to a statement from Manhattan Construction.

The top of the crane's cab sits between 15 and 20 feet above ground.

One of the workers was taken by CareFlite to Baylor Hospital in Dallas. The other two workers were taken by ambulance. None of the injuries was life-threatening, Cooper said.

The careflighted worker is in critical condition, said Maria Carpenter, a spokeswoman at Baylor Hospital. The other workers are in fair condition, Carpenter said.

She would not say what their injuries were.

The workers are employed by Derr Steel, a steel erection company based in Euless that is responsible for placing all of the arch steel and the roof steel at the site.

Officials said the injured men were well-trained.

"They are professional iron workers," Cooper said. "They know what they are doing - they've done this time after time."

The crane is in the east end zone plaza closest to Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. There are about 1,300 workers at the site at any given time.

The CareFlite air ambulance landed in the parking lot across from the stadium work site at the intersection of Randol Mill and Baird Farm roads.

Workers have been using the cranes to lift roofing materials into place and to lift trusses into place. Cranes have been a staple of the construction project since it began in April 2006.

The construction project has had few reports of injuries since it began. This is the third major accident at the Cowboys construction site.

In January 2007, a worker fell 20 feet through a hole between stadium levels. The contractor, Carrollton-based Capform, was fined $10,000 for not properly marking hole covers and not providing appropriate safety training to employees. The worker later returned to work.

Later that year, a worker was struck in the back with a crane hook and suffered broken vertebrae. He was taken to the hospital and released the next day.

Star-Telegram staff writers Sally Claunch and Nate Jones contributed to this report.