Video: Baltimore's Key Bridge Collapses Following Collision with Cargo Ship

Written by Henrik Rothen

Mar.26 - 2024 8:35 AM CET

Photo: X
Photo: X
The bridge collapsed just a few minutes ago.

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In a startling incident early Tuesday morning, the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore was brought down after a collision with a large cargo ship. The collapse was documented in a video shared on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, where a vessel was captured impacting one of the bridge's support structures. Subsequent footage showed smoke emanating from the ship prior to the bridge's disintegration.

Matthew West, a Coast Guard petty officer first class stationed in Baltimore, confirmed the incident to The New York Times, marking a significant moment for the city's infrastructure.

Further insights into the collapse were gained from a YouTube livestream, which recorded the ship making contact with the bridge shortly after 1:00 a.m. local time. By 3:00 a.m., the bridge was observed partially submerged in the harbor, broken into several fragments.

An analysis of vessel movement around the time of the incident on revealed that the Dali, a container ship under the Singapore flag, remained immobile beneath the bridge around 2:50 a.m. local time. Coast Guard units, identified as search and rescue vessels, were deployed towards the distressed ship, with one reaching its vicinity by 3:03 a.m.

Emergency response was swift, with divers, helicopters, and other rescue teams mobilized to the site as reported by Baltimore County's police scanner. The Maryland Transportation Authority, responsible for the bridge's oversight, has yet to comment on whether the bridge was occupied at the time of the collapse.

Travelers were advised of the bridge's closure in both directions through an early morning X post by the Maryland Transportation Authority, urging detours.

The bridge, an integral part of the Baltimore Beltway since its inauguration in March 1977, represented a $60.3 million investment. Stretching 10.9 miles, it was celebrated as a pivotal engineering achievement by the MDTA, connecting the city in a full loop. The collapse not only interrupts a major transportation route but also highlights concerns over maritime safety and infrastructure resilience.

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