‘The whole bridge just collapsed.’ Baltimore first responders react

A cargo ship is stuck under the part of the structure of the Francis Scott Key Bridge after the ship hit the bridge Tuesday March 26, 2024, in Baltimore, Md. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Credit: AP

Credit: AP

A cargo ship is stuck under the part of the structure of the Francis Scott Key Bridge after the ship hit the bridge Tuesday March 26, 2024, in Baltimore, Md. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Emergency officials received a mayday alert early Tuesday from the container ship Dali moments before the vessel struck Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge.

A dispatcher radioed to emergency personnel that a ship had lost its ability to steer and to hold all traffic on the span. The alert and fast action by emergency workers helped reduce the number of motorists on the bridge and likely saved lives, Maryland Gov. Wes Moore said at a Tuesday morning press conference.

Later in the dispatch communication, a voice is heard saying, “The whole bridge just collapsed.”

Below is about two minutes of the public radio dispatch traffic from the Maryland Transportation Authority police via the Broadcastify.com archive.

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