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Bridge Collapse in Baltimore Following Collision with Cargo Ship

Early Tuesday morning, the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore collapsed into the Patapsco River following a collision with a cargo ship, resulting in several vehicles plunging into the water. The U.S. Coast Guard was alerted to the incident at 1:27 a.m., reporting that a 948-foot Singapore-flagged containership had struck the bridge.

During a press conference later in the morning, Baltimore Fire Chief James Wallace indicated that rescue crews were actively searching for potentially seven individuals who may have been affected by the collapse, though this number could change as the situation unfolds. Maryland Transportation Secretary Paul Wiedfeld provided updates, stating that eight people were on the bridge during the collapse, with two individuals currently unaccounted for, one hospitalized, one declining medical treatment, and the rest being sought after.

Fortunately, all crew members aboard the cargo ship are reported to be uninjured and safe. Sonar data revealed that the water temperature in the area was approximately 47 degrees Fahrenheit. As a precaution, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has imposed flight restrictions around the bridge wreckage to ensure the safety of rescue operations.

In response to the incident, Governor Wes Moore declared a State of Emergency in Maryland, coordinating efforts with various officials and agencies to mobilize federal resources swiftly. He expressed gratitude for the courageous emergency responders and emphasized ongoing communication with all levels of government involved in the rescue efforts.

Mayor Brandon M. Scott of Baltimore also provided updates, confirming that emergency personnel were on-site and actively engaged in response efforts. Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas assured the public that there were no indications of the collision being an intentional act, with the focus remaining on search and rescue operations led by the U.S. Coast Guard and local partners.

The Francis Scott Key Bridge, named after the author of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” has been a vital transportation link since its opening in 1977. The Port of Baltimore, served by the bridge, handles significant international cargo, reinforcing its economic importance as one of the nation’s largest ports.

By: Montana Newsroom staff

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