Baltimore Key Bridge collapse latest news: Victim recovery suspended as salvage operation begins

Moment bridge in Baltimore collapses after ship collision

The first two bodies have been recovered from the Patapsco River after the collapse of Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge, authorities said at a press conference on Wednesday. State officials announced they have suspended recovery operations, citing safety concerns for divers and an inability to reach vehicles still trapped within the submerged remains of the structure. The mission is now a salvage one, officials said.

The men have been identified as Alejandro Hernandez Fuentes, 35, and Dorlian Ronial Castillo Cabrera, 26.

All of the construction workers were repairing potholes on the bridge when the Dali container cargo ship collided with one of its supports and brought it down in the early hours of Tuesday morning. Two of the men were immediately rescued from the scene.

A rescue effort was called off on Tuesday night as Coast Guard Rear Admiral Shannon Gilreath said there was no hope of finding the men alive due to the frigid water and the length of time since the accident.

Officials say they do not know when the bridge or port will be reopened, sparking fears about the disruption to trade likely to result from the tragedy.

The busy Port of Baltimore employs 8,000 area residents, generating $2m a day in wages.


Four of the bodies of the men remain in the water

Tom Perez, senior advisor and assistant to President Biden, said that the bodies of four of the men remain in the water.

The bodies of two men — Alejandro Hernandez Fuentes, 35, and Dorlian Ronial Castillo Cabrera, 26 — were pulled from the Patapsco River on Wednesday.

But the bodies of Miguel Luna, Maynor Suazo and José López and another victim remain in the water.

Mr Perez said the federal government is working with families to address their needs, including potentially bringing relatives to the US on humanitarian parole.

Michelle Del Rey28 March 2024 22:40


One of the survivors doesn’t know how to swim, wife says

The wife of Julio Cervantes, one of the victims of the the Baltimore bridge tragedy, said her husband doesn’t know how to swim and it’s a “miracle he survived”, according to NBC News. The wife identified herself only with her last name, which is the same as her husband’s.

Mr Cervantes was taken to a hospital with a chest wound and was released the same day, the woman said. She added that her brother-in-law was one of the men whose bodies were recovered on Wednesday but did not identify him. One of her nephews remains among the missing men.

“We haven’t been able to sleep, waiting for word if they’re going to find a relative,” she told the outlet.

Michelle Del Rey28 March 2024 22:28


Did ‘dirty fuel’ play a role in Baltimore bridge collapse?

Minutes before the collision, the propulsion system on board the vessel went down, alarms sounded, and the vessel began veering towards a support for the bridge.

Read more by Louise Boyle:

Michelle Del Rey28 March 2024 22:10


GoFundMe tops $98k for families of Baltimore bridge collapse victims

A fundraiser for the families of the victims of Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse has garnered nearly $100,000, just days after the tragedy.

The GoFundMe page had raised over $98,000 by Thursday morning.

The fundraiser, organised by the volunteer group Latino Racial Justice Circle, explained that the cash would be “distributed directly” to the “families of the victims” of the bridge collapse.

Michelle Del Rey28 March 2024 21:55


Six out of eight men have so far been identified

The identities of six out of of the eight victims have been released so far. The construction workers have been identified as Julio Cervantes, Alejandro Hernandez Fuentes, Dorian Castillo Cabrera, Miguel Luna, Maynor Suazo and José López.

Mr Cervantes and another unidentified victim survived the tragedy.

Michelle Del Rey28 March 2024 21:39


Baltimore Orioles honour tragedy victims on opening day

Michelle Del Rey28 March 2024 21:10


Cost to repair the bridge likely to reach billions of dollars

AM Best, an insurance service company, is estimating that the cost to rebuild the bridge is likely to be billions of dollars though an official estimate won’t be ready for a while.

“While the total cost of the bridge collapse and associated claims will not be clear for some time, it is likely to run into the billions of dollars,” the company said. “The insurance issued the collapse of the bridge will take a long time to determine and may involve several lines such as property, cargo, liability, trade credit and contingent business interruption.”

Michelle Del Rey28 March 2024 20:48


Maryland makes $60m request to cover the costs of repairs

Maryland Governor Wes Moore made the announcement on X. The funds will go toward debris removal, support mobilization, operations and laying the foundation for a rapid recovery.

Michelle Del Rey28 March 2024 20:18


Press Conference on Key Bridge collapse to happen at 6:15pm ET

Maryland Governor Wes Moore is set to hold a news conference at 6:15pm today. He’ll be joined by US Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen, Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski,  Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott and representatives of the Maryland State Police, US Coast Guard, US Army Corps of Engineers and Maryland Department of Transportation.

Michelle Del Rey28 March 2024 20:01


Disturbing Baltimore bridge 911 ‘survivor’ call prank spreads on social media

A fake call to the emergency services claiming to be from a driver on the Francis Scott Key Bridge when it collapsed is going viral on social media.

Here’s more from Catherine Shuttleworth for Indy100.

Michelle Del Rey28 March 2024 19:53

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