Bridge in Baltimore Crumbles Down

( – On March 26, the Francis Scott Key Bridge, which spans the Patapsco River in Baltimore, Maryland, collapsed after a cargo ship lost power and crashed into one of the bridge’s support columns.

According to authorities, when the Singapore-flagged ship Dali lost power, crews aboard tried unsuccessfully to restart the ship. When the efforts failed, the pilot issued a mayday call to the Maryland Transit Authority and the Maryland Department of Transportation, who were able to stop some traffic from going over the bridge, “saving lives,” according to Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott.

Video of the crash shows the lights on the ship flickering on and off, then a “big, big puff of black” smoke coming from the cargo ship just before it crashed into the bridge.

The collision caused almost one mile of the 1.6-mile-long bridge to collapse, sending vehicles and eight Brawner Builders employees, who had been filling potholes on the bridge, into the water. Two of the eight construction workers were rescued from the water, with one worker refusing treatment and another taken to the University of Maryland Medical Center and released later in the day.

Democratic Maryland Rep. David Trone said those searching for victims are using drones to conduct searches underwater. Five vehicles have been located under the water, at least one with presumed fatalities.

Based on initial information, the special agent in charge of the FBI’s Baltimore field office, William DelBagno, stated that there is no indication terrorism was involved in this incident.

On March 27, the recovery efforts resumed for the six construction workers. Among those missing and presumed dead are Miguel Luna, from El Salvador, who has lived in Maryland for 19 years; a 26-year-old and a 35-year-old, from Guatemala; Maynor Yassir Suazo Sandoval, from Honduras; and two people from Mexico.

The U.S. Coast Guard boarded the ship on March 26 to retrieve the voyage data recorder. The National Transportation Safety Board Chair Jennifer Homendy said investigators boarded the ship on March 27 to begin collecting evidence, including electronics and documentation.

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