Army Engineer Corps Has No Estimate On Bridge Cleanup

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said it is impossible to predict when the Francis Scott Key Bridge debris will be removed from the Patapsco River and the Port of Baltimore will again open to regular maritime traffic.

As part of a rebuilding process that he warns will be difficult and expensive, Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg highlights that the military branch and the Coast Guard have been tasked with cleaning up the region.

A representative for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said that no timeframes are available for channel clearance and reopening at this time. They said their first priority at this time is supporting state and local partners, as well as the U.S. Coast Guard, in their recovery operations.

The Baltimore District of the Army Corps of Engineers has declared that it has turned on its emergency operations center. As a result, more than 1,100 experts in engineering, construction, contracts, and operations will be able to support local, state, and federal authorities following Tuesday’s bridge collapse.

The branch will assist with structural engineering, the ability to analyze underwater environments, and the ability to remove material that might endanger passage from the canal. In addition, they have urban search and rescue structural, technical experts, and qualified bridge safety inspectors on hand.

Divers found a red pickup vehicle buried in the river on Wednesday. Consequently, two bodies were pulled out of the bay. Unfortunately, it is thought that four more construction workers perished in the fall and are still missing.

Superintendent Col. Roland Butler of the Maryland State Police said that it is dangerous for divers to traverse or operate near the wreckage because of the superstructure around the suspected cars and the large amount of concrete and debris nearby.

On Wednesday, Gov. Wes Moore of Maryland voiced doubts over the project’s timing and final cost.