Miami bridge collapse death toll rises to 9

Miami bridge collapse death toll rises to 9

Two days before the collapse, an engineer with the design firm left a voicemail to say some cracking had been found at one end of the concrete span, but the voicemail wasn't picked up until after the collapse, Florida Department of Transportation officials said Friday.

The state employee was out on assignment Tuesday and didn't hear the voice mail from W. Denney Pate of FIGG Bridge Engineers until he returned to the office Friday, the DOT said.

Amjad Aref, a professor with the University of Buffalo's Institute of Bridge Engineering, said they should have been "a big, red flag". And when you see cracks, somebody has to raise really a big flag and say, 'We need to do something. Three hours later, the bridge fell.

It's unclear if those cracks contributed to the bridge's deadly collapse.

Engineers also had a permit that allowed them to close the road under the bridge, the Tamiami Trail, but FDOT said the design team never made the request.

Mr Humble said he was unable to get to his friend Alexa, who was unresponsive.

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"We're going to all want to do our best to find out exactly what happened here, and we will do that in a transparent manner", he said.

But in ABC projects like the FIU span, the loss of the extra support from the main tower during construction is a risk, he said.

A spokeswoman for Miami-Dade County Public Schools said by phone that MCM had been doing high-quality work for the district for more than 20 years, but noted that the FIU bridge project was different.

Police had said the work to remove crushed vehicles from the scene would be long and tedious - in part because the large debris that smashed them needed to be broken down into small chunks and taken away.

Andrew Herman, a former president of the American Society of Civil Engineers, told USA Today that it seemed the builders did not follow the proper sequence in putting the bridge up.

Last weekend, FIU tweeted a photo of what the completed bridge would look like.

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"But from a safety perspective, we don't see that there's any issue there so we're not concerned about it from that perspective, although obviously the cracking is not good and something's going to have to be, ya know, done to fix that".

"It's very hard, the waiting is so.it's nothing I can imagine", she said.

The bridge connected the university campus to the small suburban city of Sweetwater, where many students and faculty live.

Miami-Dade Police say every time a victim is removed a moment of silence is observed and the vehicles are given an escort to the Medical Examiner.

Last week, the university posted a rendering of the completed bridge to Twitter, showing that it was meant to include a tall central column with cables. Eyewitnesses said the bridge had been noticeably bouncy when the concrete was placed, and when it reached the middle of the bridge, it began to twist and roll before tipping off the abutments.

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