UPDATED: Key Bridge Collapse – Recovery Efforts This Morning

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Image courtesy Baltimore County Fire Department

UPDATED 3/27/24–9 p.m.–Fox News reports that according to Maryland authorities, two bodies have been recovered.

Divers found a red pickup truck submerged under approximately 25 feet water in the middle span of the bridge and found two bodies trapped inside.

Maryland State Police Superintendent Roland Butler identified the victims as 35-year-old Alejandro Hernandez Fuentes, of Baltimore and 26-year-old Dorlian Ronial Castillo Cabrera of Dundalk.

Butler said the men’s families have been notified by authorities.

UPDATED -3/27/24 12:15 pm

Fox News is reporting that workers have recovered a truck from the site of the Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse in the Patapsco River, but at least one vehicle remains hanging from metal debris, according to the Associated Press. It’s further stated that the outlet cited a law enforcement official who had knowledge of a Homeland Security memo detailing the recovery. 

UPDATED – 10pm – Maryland Governor Wes Moore posted on his Facebook page Tuesday night that the US Coast Guard has suspended rescue operations at the Key Bridge. Wednesday morning the Maryland State Police will begin recovery efforts.

Governor Moore has ordered the Maryland Flag lowered to half-staff effective immediately. It will remain at half-staff until further notice.  This is done in honor of the victims who tragically lost their lives as a result of the Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse that occurred today, Tuesday, March 26, 2024.

Updated Traffic Information as of 10 pm:

Detours in Place Following Collapse of Interstate 695 Bridge Over the Patapsco River (Francis Scott Key Bridge)

Motorists should expect heavy traffic, and avoid I-695 in Southeastern Baltimore County; Increased Traffic Volumes on I-695 and Other Parallel Routes

(March 26, 2024) – The Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration is assisting the Maryland Transportation Authority with traffic control related to the collapse of the I-695 bridge over the Patapsco River (Francis Scott Key Bridge). Drivers are encouraged to prepare for extra commuting time until further notice. 

The outer loop I-695 closure has shifted to exit 1/Quarantine Road (past the Curtis Creek Drawbridge) to allow for enhanced local traffic access. The inner loop of I-695 remains closed at MD 157 (Peninsula Expressway). Additionally, the ramp from MD 157 to the inner loop of I-695 will be closed. 

Drivers should use I-95 (Fort McHenry Tunnel) or I-895 (Baltimore Harbor Tunnel) for north/south routes. Commercial vehicles carrying materials that are prohibited in the tunnel crossings, including recreation vehicles carrying propane, should plan on using I-695 (Baltimore Beltway) between Essex and Glen Burnie. This will add significant driving time.  

For the latest information from the Maryland Transportation Authority, click here. For the latest real-time information on all state highways, click here

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Original story – 11am – After the Key Bridge collapsed following a container ship colliding with a pier structure, Maryland Governor Wes Moore issued a State of Emergency The investigation into the collapse of the Key Bridge in Baltimore is in the early stages as search and rescue efforts continue in the Patapsco River. During a press conference Maryland Governor Wes Moore said that “the preliminary investigation points to an accident. We haven’t seen any credible evidence of a terrorist attack.” FBI Special Agent in Charge-Baltimore Field Office Bill DelBagno also said there were no ties to terrorism in this incident.

Governor Moore says that the crew of the container ship sent a mayday in time for authorities to stop traffic from entering the bridge – limiting the number of vehicles involved in the collapse.

There were eight construction workers on the bridge at the time – repairing pot holes according to Maryland Transportation officials. Two have been rescued – one is critical at a Baltimore area hospital – the other was not injured. The search continues for the other six. Sonar has shown at least five vehicles in the water as well.

Maryland US Senator Chris Van Hollen also spoke during the press conference and has been in touch with National Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg who has said they “will do what they can to very quickly release emergency response funds.” He adds that the National Transportation Safety Board will be investigating the collapse.

Maryland Transportation officials say there was not a structural issue with the bridge. The collapse was caused when the container ship struck the bridge. Governor Moore added that the bridge was fully up to code.

Detours have been put in place for drivers after the collapse of the Key Bridge. The Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration is assisting the Maryland Transportation Authority with traffic control related to the collapse of the I-695 bridge over the Patapsco River (Frances Scott Key Bridge). Drivers are encouraged to prepare for extra commuting time until further notice.

The outer loop I-695 is closed at MD 10 (Arundel Expressway) and the inner loop of I-695 is closed at MD 157 (Peninsula Expressway). Additionally, the ramp from MD 157 to the inner loop of I-695 will be closed.

Drivers should use I-95 (Fort McHenry Tunnel) or I-895 (Baltimore Harbor Tunnel) for north/south routes. Commercial vehicles carrying materials that are prohibited in the tunnel crossings, including recreation vehicles carrying propane, should plan on using I-695 (Baltimore Beltway) between Essex and Glen Burnie. This will add significant driving time.

For the latest information from the Maryland Transportation Authority, click here. For the latest real-time information on all state highways, click here.

Additional information – https://www.wgmd.com/breaking-ship-strike-sends-francis-scott-key-bridge-into-water-near-baltimore-i-695-closed/


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