August 01, 2007

This doesn't look good

Bad News
This is a nasty catastrophe. In places it is 65' feet down from the bridge to the water. As high as a 6 story building.
The Interstate 35W Mississippi River bridge near University Avenue has collapsed into the river and onto businesses underneath the highway.
The Minneapolis could be anything: engineering problems, maintenance or renovation trouble, crooked bridge inspectors, sabotage or a Jihadist truck bomb. I have friends and family in the Minneapolis area.
The Minnesota Twins afternoon game with the visiting Kansas City Royals was nearly postponed. But it seems the teams played baseball in spite of the disaster to prevent dumping the game traffic into the scene of the bridge collapse.
Pictures of the intact I-35W bridge structure with stats, by John A. Weeks III. A quote from his I35W page: "Claim to fame: was built with a single 458 foot long steel arch to avoid putting any piers in the water to impede river navigation." ***Mr. Weeks' page may not be available - see a cached copy here. It doesn't look all that sturdy to me, but what do I know.
I wouldn't be surprised if some sort of security camera has captured the collapse on video. No surprise, CNN has video of the bridge collapsing here.

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