[Image via TSP3A]
On Monday afternoon, 39-year-old Aleim Perkins of Harlem was playing with his niece in Tompkins Square Park.
Some time around 4 p.m., witnesses said that he started pushing an empty tire swing, which struck him in the face and knocked him out. He was rushed to Beth Israel, where hospital officials said he was dead on arrival.
An EVG reader was in the playground off of East Ninth Street at Avenue with his child when the incident occurred. The reader shared this:
I can't being tell you how devastated I am at the tragic death of this man.
I noticed him horsing around with the kids.
My back was turned when the incident occurred and I wasn't aware that anything had happened until I heard the playground go eerily silent.
When I walked over to see what happened, he was lying still on the ground. Someone immediately called 911 and one of the parents who had emergency training assisted Mr. Perkins, who was unconscious and unresponsive. It's tough to judge in retrospect but it couldn't have been more than 5 minutes from the time of the incident until EMS was assisting him.
This is the first time I've seen him at the playground, but I did notice the fun he was having and the joy in his face just seconds before he was struck. He was just goofing around and a one-in-a-million accident took this poor man's life.
You can read more about the story at DNAinfo.
Updated 8:11 a.m.
The Post notes that Landscape Structures, which manufactures the Arch Tire Swing, has previously sold unsafe playground equipment, prompting recalls of swings and slides in recent years. A Parks Department spokesperson said that they are investigating the tragedy ... and wouldn't say if the Department planned on removing the swings.
Updated 9:34 a.m.
According to another resident: "[He] was shadow boxing with the tire and ducking as it swung back. He was pushing it very hard. It's very unfortunate that it happened however."