Minneapolis Bridge Collapses – 5 Dead, 8 Missing, 67 Injured

The Interstate 35W Mississippi River bridge near University Avenue has collapsed into the river.

19:11 CDT (7:11 PM CDT)

  • It is happening right now. I’m watching on Fox News.
  • Story so far… The West River Parkway from Minneapolis to University of Minnesota collapsed over the Mississippi River. It happened around 6:05PM CDT. Witnesses report hearing a huge roar and then seeing the bridge, which was filled gridlocked with rush hour traffic, collapse into the river.
  • Cause unknown so far. Huge roars could come from a collapse, but it sounds suspicious.

19:15 CDT

  • 20-30 Taken to hospital. The highway is Interstate 35 Westbound.
  • There are people in the water.
  • Department of Homeland Security has released a statement that it does not appear to be terrorism.
  • Road had been under construction since beginning of summer.
  • Cars and trucks are trapped under the bridge.
  • Local authorities fear that the eastbound span will collapse too.
  • All emergency services and fire departments in the Minneapolis area have been called to the location.

Associated Press reports at the Houston Chronicle:

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

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.

Local television stations captured video of injured people being carried up the riverbank. There was no official word on injuries, but dozens of rescue vehicles were there. Divers were also in the water.

Some people were stranded on parts of the bridge that aren’t completely in the water.

Search at Google News and Yahoo News.

Hot Air is on it. So is Dan Riehl.

19:35 CDT

  • WCCO in Minneapolis has a slide show.
  • WCCO says at least one confirmed dead. There are other reports of two dead so far.
  • At least 20-25 already taken to hospitals. Some of them have critical injuries.
  • From looking at it, there have to be more who haven’t been found yet.
  • Three sheriff’s boats dispatched to the scene.

Live video here.

19:59 CDT

  • Latest news from FNC is at least 3 dead.

20:14 CDT

  • 139,000 cars pass over the bridge every day.
  • Bridge was being repaired for potholes and so on, but no structural repairs.
  • On WCCO via FNC. Spokesman from Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) has received 6 critically wounded persons. He appears to be a doctor since he’s in scrubs with a white coat. Has received one drowning victim. Believes more are at the scene.
  • A lot of the traffic may have been going to tonight’s Minnesota Twins game.
  • What is notable about this bridge? Anti-icing equipment.
  • 50 cars on the bridge or in the water, two tractor trailers, one school bus with 8-12 year olds. Correction. 50 cars in the water or under the bridge.
  • Bridge is major link from U of M to Minneapolis. Busiest bridge in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area.

Minnesota DOT reports the current projects on this interstate.

Current Projects on I- 35W
I-35W Minneapolis

For current driving conditions and any possible delays, log on to 511mn.org.

I-35W Bus Rapid Transit Study
Feasibility study of BRTt service in the 35W corridor between Minneapolis and Lakeville.

Note: I’ve deleted inapplicable pieces from the table above.

21:04 CDT

  • Wikipedia has a story already.
  • Some information about the bridge.
  • Sight-seeing information for hikers walking under the bridge.
  • Wikinews also has an article.
  • FNC reporter says a producer counted 36 cars, a tractor trailer, and two schoolbuses on the collapsed parts of the bridge before she stopped counting. The kids from one schoolbus have gotten out alive, though with bloody faces. Pray for all the kids caught on both schoolbuses.
  • Phone calls are not getting through the cell phone system because so many people are talking. If you’re on the cell phone in Minneapolis and you’re safe get off the cell phone and on a land line.

21:22 CDT

  • Mayer of Minneapolis confirms 6 fatalities.
  • Families looking for loved ones are encouraged to meet at the MetroDome. Authorities are setting up a meeting area.
  • A construction crew was working on the bridge when it went down. Some are dead.
  • The bridge fell on a train. There are questions as to whether it is a passenger train. From the pictures I saw it looks like freight cars were crushed. Perhaps carrying grain or some other bulk product.

21:36 CDT

  • It is quite dark and not getting any lighter in Minneapolis.
  • The rain is starting.
  • Emergency personnel will work overnight.
  • They will probably switch from victim rescue to body recovery overnight.
  • I will update this if I see anything more. But the flood of information seems to have slowed to a trickle.

Pray for the victims if you can. If you do not think you can, are you sure?

O Lord our God,
You are the healer of all mankind.
In Your merciful love
you heal us of sin
and the effects of sin in this life
and the next.
We pray to you, our Lord,
this day to accelerate your plan of final healing
and glory for our brothers and sisters
who were caught in the bridge collapse in Minneapolis.
Save them from death, if that is Your plan,
and restore them in health to their families.
And for those who face their own death,
call your beloved home
to the fullness of happiness
and glory with You for all eternity.


Updated August 2 at 06:17 CDT

Updated August 8

  • With latest Body Count.
  • There will be no more updates.

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2 responses to “Minneapolis Bridge Collapses – 5 Dead, 8 Missing, 67 Injured

  1. Just so the leftist Blame Bush crowd doesn’t get to far with blaming him for causing this by derailing highway money to Iraq…

    Federal funding for ground transportation and infrastructure has increased by 26% in the first five budgets of the Bush administration (2006 vs. the last Clinton budget in 2001). In the first five budgets of the Clinton administration (1998 vs. the last Bush 41 budget in 1993), it increased by 22%. (Source: OMB)

    So there is no basis for the claims we are sure to hear that the Bush administration has “cut” funding for road/bridge maintenance.

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