The world consists of many different types of bridges. Some of them are very famous. They can be famous because they are old, huge, elegant or similar entity, but Mississippi River Bridge was famous because of a terrible accident. This bridge was also one of the most trafficable bridges in Minnesota.
Mississippi river bridge Mississippi River Bridge was a great bridge, made of steel in Minneapolis, Minnesota which was built over the Mississippi River. It had eight lanes and over 200.000 cars past the bridge every day. The length of the bridge was 581 meters, and the width was 33 meters. They started to construct the bridge in 1964, and it was opened for traffic three years later, in November 1967.
The disaster On August 1th, 2007 at 06:05 p.m. the bridge collapsed. It was rush hour on the bridge and around 100 cars were involved. Suddenly the central point of the bridge collapsed. A big number of rescue parties came to rescue drivers and passengers. Eyewitness told that they saw people struggle in the mass of water. A camera captured how the bridge collapsed while the cars were still on it. It was sensational pictures. Many people were rescued, but somebody was stuck in their cars. Divers were also there to search for people in the river.
A school bus carrying 60 pupils was very near to fall down to the river, but they had good fortune. A freight train was passing under the bridge when it collapsed and was cut in two, say witnesses. Thirteen people died in this disaster, aged from 22 months to 60 years. They were all Minnesota residents. During the first 40 hours, 11 area hospitals treated 98 victims.
3 days after the disaster USA’s president, George W. Bush came to the scene of the collapse. Bush drove to the American Red Cross building, where he me the families of two victims who were killed in the collapse.
As early as 1990, the authorities found defects on the bridge. This is shocking many people.
– We thought we had done everything we could do, but this had we not been thinking of, says Dan Dorgan, with connection to the authorities in Minnesota.
Interview with Mark Rosenker
Here is a short interview with the chairman of National Transportation Safety Board, Mark Rosenker:
Why did the bridge collapse? The bridge collapsed because there was under-sizing of the gusset plates. And there were approximately eight positions where that occurred.
What is a gusset plate? What is it there to do underneath the bridge? Well, simply stated, it is a component of the bridge which ties the beams together. It is normally considered a stronger part of the bridge, even stronger than the beams that it ties together.
Now, when you released this information, the results of the investigation, you stepped back from calling this the cause of the collapse. Why, if you're so sure that these plates failed, are you not ready yet to say, "This is why the bridge fell down"? Well, it is why the bridge fell down. It broke. It could not support the weights. The question is what was different on that day, on August 1st at around 6 o’clock that was different than the day before, the weeks before, the years before? That's what we're trying to understand.
Chairman Rosenker, thanks for joining us. It's a pleasure.
Mississippi River Bridge was a great bridge and over 200.000 cars past the bridge every day. On August 1th, the bridge collapsed, and it was newspaper columns and television broadcasts all over the world. A disaster had happened. Over 100 cars were involved, 13 person died and in all it was 98 victims. The chairman of National Transportation Safety Board, Mark Rosenker, says that the bridge collapsed because there was under-sizing of the gusset plates.