FBI Opens Criminal Investigation Into Baltimore Bridge Collapse Incident

Francis Scott Key Bridge
Screengrab from YouTube video posted by WQAD News 8

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has opened a criminal investigation into Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse.

The investigation focuses on the incidents before the disaster, including the activities of the cargo ship Dali, which collided with the bridge on March 26, 2024.

According to reports, federal investigators boarded the MV Dali ship on April 15, 2024, to start their investigation and collect evidence.

According to sources familiar with the inquiry, the FBI is investigating whether crew members knew of any possible issues with the ship before it attempted to depart the Port of Baltimore.

Simultaneously, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is also investigating the cause of the Bridge collapse alongside related safety issues.

The incident occurred after the Singaporean-flagged MV Dali lost power and collided with the bridge en route to Sri Lanka.

Among the dead victims were the six labourers working on the bridge at the time of the crash from El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico, and Honduras.

New information has revealed that the ship encountered electrical problems just before departing from Baltimore.


Video Credits: WQAD News 8/YouTube

Alarms on some of its refrigerated containers indicated an unstable power supply, raising concerns about the ship’s readiness for the journey.

Jennifer Homendy, Chair of the NTSB, revealed that their probe will thoroughly examine the ship’s electrical system, including its role in the circumstances leading up to the crash.

In the meantime, Mayor Brandson Scott stated that the city intends to take legal action against individuals responsible for the tragedy, including the MV Dali’s owner, operator, and manufacturer.

The ship is managed by Synergy Marine Group and owned by Grace Ocean Private Ltd., both domiciled in Singapore.

The Danish shipping and logistics company Maersk chartered the vessel.

Synergy and Grace Ocean filed a court petition to restrict their liability under US maritime law.

Attorneys representing victims and survivors have criticised the move, alleging that it undermines accountability.

Attorney L. Chris Stewart emphasised the devastating effects of the collapse on families and condemned the firms for attempting to protect their assets under “archaic law.”

The inquiry into the Key Bridge collapse highlights broader concerns about bridge safety in the United States, particularly the recent occurrences like the Pittsburgh barge tragedy.

Authorities remain determined to discover the truth and hold those involved accountable.

Reference: The Guardian, AP

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