Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Freeway Bridge Collapse in Minneapolis

A freeway bridge across the Mississippi in Minneapolis collapsed. (ht: Badger Blogger)

A four-lane interstate bridge spanning the Mississippi River collapsed during evening rush hour Wednesday, sending vehicles and tons of concrete crashing into the water.

Two people have been confirmed dead, and one more is unconfirmed. The number is expected to grow. At least eight cars and one truck were submerged in the water.

Fifteen people patients were being treated at the Hennepin County Medical Center. All reportedly had multiple injuries, some critical. The hospital sent out an "alert orange," callling all available, off-duty staff to work.

The entire span of the Interstate 35W bridge collapsed about 6:05 p.m. A tractor-trailer caught fire, and flame and black smoke billowed into the sky.

The bridge was reportedly under construction, undergoing resurfacing. Traffic had been reduced to one or two lanes in each direction at the time.
WCCO-TV has raw footage from the scene.

Update! Fox News is reporting three dead now, and the Twin Cities Red Cross is asking for help.
The Twin Cities Red Cross is responding to the 35W birdge collapse and is providing mass care, mental health counseling and more to those on scene.

The best way to help to make a donation to the Local Disaster Relief Fund - CLICK HERE or call 612-460-3700.