On March 26, 2024, the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore collapsed when a container ship collided with it. Though authorities were able to stop traffic from crossing the bridge just before the collapse, unfortunately, a construction crew was fixing potholes on the bridge when it fell. Eight people fell 185 feet into the 47 degrees Fahrenheit water below. Two workers were rescued — one injured and one unharmed — and two bodies were recovered, but four people remain missing and are presumed dead.

What Caused the Francis Scott Key Bridge Collapse?

Around 1:30 a.m. local time on March 26, the Dali, a 985-foot-long cargo vessel, suffered a power failure and crashed into a concrete pier beneath the Francis Scott Key Bridge, causing the entire structure to crumble, according to multiple reports. Moments before the crash, the ship was able to send out a mayday call and drop its anchor, which gave authorities enough time to clear the bridge of cars and stop traffic. However, they did not have enough time to alert the construction team on the bridge.

Who Were the Victims in the Francis Scott Key Bridge Collapse?

After a day of search and rescue efforts, the Coast Guard suspended its operation at 7:30 p.m. local time on March 26, as officials transitioned to recovery efforts for the remaining six victims.

“Based on the length of time that we’ve gone in this search, the extensive search efforts that we’ve put into it, the water temperature — that at this point we do not believe that we’re going to find any of these individuals still alive,” Coast Guard Rear Admiral Shannon Gilreath said in a statement, per CBS News.

Divers returned to the water to continue recovery efforts on the morning of March 27, 2024.

Though not all six victims have been named yet, the nonprofit organization CASA identified one of the men as Miguel Luna of El Salvador. “He is a husband, a father of three, and has called Maryland his home for over 19 years,” the organization said.

Who Died in the Baltimore Bridge Collapse? Victims’ Names

The Guatemalan Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed that two other victims, men in their 30s and 40s with spouses and kids, were from Guatemala, including a man named Dorlian Cabrera of ​​Guatemala City.

Honduras’ Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Antonio García revealed to The Associated Press that Maynor Yassir Suazo Sandoval, a Honduran citizen, was also missing.

The Mexican Embassy in Washington confirmed that some of the missing victims are Mexican, per CBS.

Shortly before 10 a.m. on March 27, divers recovered the bodies of two construction workers who were found trapped in a red pickup truck in approximately 25 feet of water in the Patapsco River near the wreckage of the bridge, Maryland State Police Secretary Roland L. Butler Jr. said in a press conference. One of the men was identified as Cabrera, while the other man was identified as Alejandro Hernandez Fuentes.

While in the water, divers discovered that other vehicles had been trapped and possibly contained the other victims, according to Butler. However, the search had to be suspended due to the conditions of the water.

In a statement on the website for the construction company, Brawner Builders, owner Jack Murphy reflected on this “very sad time” following the tragedy.

“Unfortunately, this tragic event was completely unforeseen and was not something that we could imagine would happen,” Murphy said in the statement. “Our company is in mourning over the loss of these fine people. But of course, our sense of loss cannot in any way compare to what their families are feeling. As to the one individual who was hospitalized, we pray for a full recovery. For those who have perished in this tragedy, our prayers are with them and their families.”

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