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In a devastating incident, the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore collapsed after being struck by a large cargo ship early Tuesday morning. The impact caused several vehicles to plunge into the Patapsco River, with at least seven people believed to be in the water. Two individuals were rescued, one unharmed and the other in serious condition. Authorities are conducting a massive search operation involving divers, helicopters, and sonar technology to locate any remaining victims. The vessel that struck the bridge, a Singapore-flagged container ship named ‘Dali,’ is being assessed for damage before rescuers can board it.

Maryland Transportation Secretary Paul Wiedefeld stated that there is no evidence suggesting the incident was intentional or related to terrorism. Governor Wes Moore has declared a state of emergency and is working with federal resources to assist in the rescue efforts. The tragic collapse of the Key Bridge has resulted in the suspension of all vessel traffic into and out of the Port of Baltimore, although the port remains open for truck transports. Alternate routes via Interstates 95 or 895 are recommended for drivers to navigate around the collapsed bridge and its closure on Interstate 695.

The Francis Scott Key Bridge, a 1.6-mile, 4-lane structure that crosses the Patapsco River, is a vital transportation link critical to East Coast shipping. Named after the author of the “Star Spangled Banner,” the bridge opened in 1977 and is a key route for the port’s private and public terminals that handle a significant amount of auto, truck, and cargo traffic. The bridge’s collapse has had a major impact on transportation in the area, leading authorities to divert traffic and conduct thorough investigations into the causes of the incident.

The container vessel that collided with the Key Bridge, ‘Dali,’ is owned by Singapore’s Grace Ocean Pte and chartered by Maersk, a major shipping company. The ship’s management company, Synergy Marine Corp, stated that all crew members, including two pilots, have been safely accounted for. Maersk expressed deep concern for those affected by the tragedy and emphasized their thoughts are with all involved. The U.S. Coast Guard is focused on the search-and-rescue operation, but has not provided details about the vessel’s destination or the circumstances of the collision.

As the search for potential victims continues in the aftermath of the bridge collapse in Baltimore, local, state, and federal agencies are collaborating to coordinate rescue efforts both above and below the surface of the water. With the Key Bridge being a crucial part of the transportation infrastructure in the region, the impact of its collapse is significant and has prompted emergency response actions to address the immediate aftermath of this tragic event. The community is coming together to support those affected by the incident and ensure that all necessary resources are deployed to aid in the search, rescue, and recovery efforts.

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