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Explainer-Why did the Baltimore bridge collapse and what do we all know concerning the ship? By Reuters


By Lisa Shumaker

(Reuters) -Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge collapsed early on Tuesday after a container ship smashed right into a pylon, with the six individuals lacking presumed lifeless after falling into the frigid water beneath. Authorities stopped individuals from utilizing the bridge after the ship despatched out a mayday name, which Maryland’s governor stated saved lives.

It might be a while earlier than one of many busiest ports on the U.S. Jap Seaboard can reopen.

WHAT HAPPENED IN BALTIMORE?

Shortly after 1 a.m. ET (0500 GMT), a container ship named the Dali was crusing down the Patapsco River on its technique to Sri Lanka. At 1:24 a.m., it suffered a complete energy failure and all its lights went out.

Three minutes later, at 1:27 a.m., the container ship struck a pylon of the bridge, crumpling virtually your entire construction into the water. 

The bridge was as much as code and there have been no identified structural points, Maryland Governor Wes Moore stated.

There was no indication of terrorism, police stated.

WHY DID THE BRIDGE COLLAPSE?

The steel truss-style bridge has a suspended deck, a design that contributed to its collapse, engineers say. The ship appeared to hit a most important concrete pier, which rests on soil underwater and is a part of the inspiration.

ARE THERE ANY CASUALTIES?

Six individuals are lacking and presumed lifeless, Maryland state police stated. Two individuals had been rescued, one unhurt and one critically injured.

A development crew was fixing potholes on the bridge and eight individuals fell 185 toes (56 meters) into the river the place water temperatures had been 47 F (8 C). 

In accordance with analysis for the Federal Aviation Administration, that’s the higher restrict of what a human may survive falling into water.

Authorities saved lives by stopping autos from utilizing the bridge after the ship despatched out a mayday name, the Maryland governor stated.

The ship additionally dropped its anchors to attempt to keep away from the collision.

WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT THE SHIP THAT WAS INVOLVED?

The Dali was leaving Baltimore en path to Colombo, Sri Lanka.

All 22 crew, together with two pilots on board, have been accounted for and there have been no accidents, the ship’s supervisor, Synergy Marine Group stated.

The registered proprietor of the Singapore-flagged ship is Grace Ocean Pte Ltd, LSEG information present. The ship measures 948 toes (289 meters) — so long as three soccer fields positioned finish to finish — and was stacked excessive with containers.

The ship can maintain as much as 10,000 twenty-foot equal unit, or TEU, a measure of cargo capability. It was carrying 4,679 TEU.

The identical ship was concerned in an incident within the port of Antwerp, Belgium, in 2016, when it hit a quay because it tried to exit the North Sea container terminal.

A later inspection in June 2023 carried out in San Antonio in Chile discovered the vessel had “propulsion and auxiliary equipment” deficiencies, based on information on the general public Equasis web site, which offers info on ships.

WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT THE BRIDGE THAT COLLAPSED?

The Francis Scott Key Bridge was one among 3 ways to cross the Baltimore Harbor and dealt with 31,000 vehicles per day or 11.3 million autos a yr.

The metal construction is 4 lanes broad and sits 185 toes (56 meters) above the river.    

It opened in 1977 and crosses the Patapsco River, the place U.S. nationwide anthem writer Francis Scott Key wrote the “Star Spangled Banner (NASDAQ:)” in 1814 after witnessing the British defeat on the Battle of Baltimore and the British bombing of Fort McHenry.

HOW WILL THE BRIDGE COLLAPSE IMPACT THE BALTIMORE PORT? 

Site visitors was suspended on the port after the collision.  It is likely one of the smallest container ports on the Northeastern seaboard, dealing with a few tenth of the amount that passes via the Port of New York and New Jersey. 

The circulation of containers to Baltimore can doubtless be redistributed to greater ports, stated container delivery professional Lars Jensen. Nevertheless, there might be main disruptions in delivery vehicles, coal and sugar.

It’s the busiest U.S. port for automotive shipments, dealing with a minimum of 750,000 autos in 2023, based on information from the Maryland Port Administration.

© Reuters. A view of the Dali cargo vessel which crashed into the Francis Scott Key Bridge causing it to collapse in Baltimore, Maryland, U.S., March 26, 2024.  REUTERS/Julia Nikhinson

In 2023, the port was the second busiest for coal exports.

It is usually the biggest U.S. port by quantity for dealing with farm and development equipment, in addition to agricultural merchandise resembling sugar and salt.



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