When a Bridge Falls
At the height of rush hour on August 1, 2007 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, a bridge carrying eight lanes of I-35W over the Mississippi River suddenly collapsed, sending cars trucks plunging into the water below. Thirteen people died and 145 were injured in one of the worst bridge accidents in years.
This week’s Retro Report examines the collapse and its effect on decaying bridges across the nation. Using archival footage, and interviews with survivors and those who investigated the accident, the video details what caused it to fall as well as the long-standing history of problems with the I-35W bridge.
Since the accident, states around the country are spending more money than ever to repair or replace bridges with serious problems, but transportation engineers say it’s still not enough. Last year’s collapse of another interstate bridge north of Seattle was a reminder of just how far the nation has to go to address the condition of our bridges.
The Retro Report blog has some companion links to this story.
Roll Call: Are Our Bridges Safe?
New York Times: A Disaster Brings Awareness but Little Action on Infrastructure
The Takeaway: Interview with Retro Report producer Drew Magratten (starting at 25:00)
The Uptake: 2007 Collapse Of I-35W Minneapolis Bridge Gets “Retro” Examination
Conversations with Thinkers: An interview with producer Drew Magratten