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'Mass Casualties' Feared After Cargo Ship Strikes and Collapses Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge

francis scott key bridge baltimore mass casualties cargo ship collapse
Source: X

Mar. 26 2024, Published 8:00 a.m. ET

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The Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore, Maryland collapsed on Tuesday morning after being struck by a container ship, RadarOnline.com can report.

The collapse reportedly occurred when a Singapore-based vessel, Dali, crashed into the central part of the Francis Scott Key Bridge at approximately 1:40 AM.

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Startling footage captured the bridge crumbling into the Patapsco River, with several vehicles – including one the size of a tractor-trailer truck – plunging down into the water below.

The ship also caught fire, adding to the chaos as thick, black smoke billowed across the busy harbor.

Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott expressed disbelief at the scene. He described the tragedy as an "unthinkable tragedy."

“This is an unthinkable tragedy,” Mayor Scott said shortly after 6 AM on Tuesday morning. “Never would you think that you could see, physically see, the Key Bridge tumble down like that. It looked like something out of an action movie.”

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francis scott key bridge baltimore mass casualties cargo ship collapse
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Emergency responders, including the Baltimore City Fire Department and the US Coast Guard, sprang into action. A state of emergency was declared and rescue efforts were quickly initiated.

The impact of the devastating collision reportedly caused the steel arches of the bridge to collapse into the Patapsco River – disrupting the flow of traffic and causing what the Baltimore City Fire Department has since described as a “mass casualty incident.”

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The sequence of events was captured on camera, with footage showing the bridge disintegrating after the vessel collided with it.

The aftermath of the crash left several vehicles submerged in the water, triggering a race against time for rescue teams to locate and assist those in distress.

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francis scott key bridge baltimore mass casualties cargo ship collapse
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At least two people were found in the water – with one in critical condition – as emergency responders continued their search efforts. Several others believed to be on the bridge at the time of its collapse were still reportedly missing several hours after the incident.

Meanwhile, the White House confirmed that it was “closely monitoring” the situation and has so far has seen “no indication of any nefarious intent.”

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“Our hearts go out to the families of those who remain missing as a result of this horrific incident,” one official said on Tuesday morning. “The U.S. Coast Guard is conducting search and rescue for those who remain unaccounted for as a result of the bridge collapse.”

Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg also confirmed that he was in communication with Maryland Governor Wes Moore and Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott.

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francis scott key bridge baltimore mass casualties cargo ship collapse
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“I’ve spoken with Gov. Moore and Mayor Scott to offer USDOT’s support following the vessel strike and collapse of the Francis Scott Key bridge,” Buttigieg said at 3 AM.

“Rescue efforts remain underway and drivers in the Baltimore area should follow local responder guidance on detours and response,” he added.

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