Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Deliveryman Trapped In Elevator for Days

Boy, talk about being trapped in a dead-end job.
A restaurant deliveryman who immigrated from China and speaks virtually no English spent three days unnoticed in a stalled high-rise elevator in the Bronx as an intensive search swirled around him, the police said today. He emerged this morning thirsty but appearing otherwise all right after someone finally heard - or he finally figured how to trigger - the elevator car's alarm.
Ming Kuang Chen, 35, had gone to deliver dinners to Tracey Towers, two apartment buildings that rise 38 and 41 floors, respectively. When he failed to reappear after delivering the food, a massive searched was launched. Delivery people are often the target of crimes, so foul play was suspected.

Meanwhile, the Tracey Towers elevators are notoriously troublesome, so no one thought twice about them being out of order for a few days.
Mr. Chen is reported to be from the coastal Fuzhou region of Fujian Province in southeastern China, where his wife and 12-year-old son live. His family told the police that he had entered the United States illegally and paid off a $60,000 fee to the people who smuggled him in, the police said.

He has worked six days a week at Happy Dragon, making about 40 deliveries a day on weekdays and as many as 60 on weekends. His last delivery on Friday was to an off-duty police officer who lives in Tracey Towers, the police said.