Baltimore Bridge Collapse: Pilot of Cargo Ship Did 'Everything' to Avoid Collision, Indian Crew's SOS Saved – News18

Curated By: Rohit
Last Updated: March 27, 2024, 12:21 IST
Baltimore, US
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)
Maryland Governor Wes Moore praised the Indian crew for their prompt warning before the collision of a cargo ship with the Baltimore bridge on Tuesday morning, which resulted in “saving many lives”.
The owners of Singapore-flagged container ship “Dali”, which was involved in the incident, said the vessel collided with a pillar of the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore while under pilotage with two pilots on board. All crew members, including the two pilots, were located, and there were no reports of injuries.
One of the pilots did “everything that he could have done” to slow the ship and prevent it from drifting toward the bridge, the New York Post reported. This was revealed by Clay Diamond, executive director and general counsel of the American Pilots Association, who has been in close communication with the Association of Maryland Pilots since the catastrophic collapse of the Francis Scott Key bridge.
On Tuesday, the Dali cargo, heading out of Baltimore Harbor bound for Sri Lanka, plowed into a support pylon of the Francis Scott Key Bridge over the mouth of the Patapsco River at about 1:30 am (local time). A trestled section of the 2.57 km span almost immediately crumpled into the icy water, sending vehicles and people into the river. The ship issued a “mayday loss of power,” alerting Maryland officials to stop cars from crossing the bridge moments before the ship collided. “The ship issued a mayday loss of power. The workers on the bridge halted traffic right before impact. They saved lots of lives,” Baltimore Brandon Scott was quoted as saying by the NYP, during a press conference.
Despite their prompt SOS call, six workers were missing and presumed dead from a bridge that collapsed in Baltimore Harbor, forcing the closure of one of the busiest ports on the US Eastern Seaboard. Active search-and-rescue operations were suspended about 18 hours after the accident. US Coast Guard Rear Admiral Shannon Gilreath said there was no hope of finding the missing workers alive due to the frigid water and the length of time elapsed since the accident.
The Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore, Maryland which crosses the Patapsco River has reportedly Collapsed within the last few minutes after being Struck by a Large Container Ship; a Mass Casualty Incident has been Declared with over a Dozen Cars and many Individuals said to…— OSINTdefender (@sentdefender) March 26, 2024
State Police Colonel Roland Butler said authorities hoped to return divers to the water after sunrise on Wednesday to recover the workers’ remains. Rescuers pulled two survivors to safety, one of whom was hospitalised. US media report earlier said the ship reported a power failure before impact, which enabled officials to stop traffic on the bridge before the collapse. “By being able to stop cars from coming over the bridge, these people are heroes. They saved lives last night,” Maryland Governor Wes Moore said at a midday news briefing.
Baltimore Mayor described a scene of twisted metal shooting into the sky. “It was something out of an action movie. It was something you never thought you’d see,” he said. Video footage on social media showed the vessel slamming into the bridge in darkness, the headlights of vehicles visible on the span as it crashed into the water and the ship caught fire. US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said the closure of one of the country’s busiest shipping lanes until further notice would have a “major and protracted impact to supply chains.” The Port of Baltimore handles more automobile cargo than any other US port – more than 750,000 vehicles in 2022, according to port data.
(With agency inputs)


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