Thankfully no one sustained any life-threatening injuries, and there weren’t any reports of people trapped in the debris. However, the collapse did trap a truck, which began leaking 25 gallons of diesel fuel into the drains, NBC4 Washington reports. The bridge has blocked both directions of traffic on Interstate 295, with most of the southbound portion of the bridge falling, while a part of the northbound side remains intact. Still, concrete and metal debris can be found everywhere across the highway’s six lanes, with several vehicles stuck underneath the bridge.
“Everything we see in the accident scene right now leads to this being a collision pulling the bridge off its mooring,” Deputy Mayor for Public Safety Chris Geldart said. “We do believe this was caused by the collision.”
Officials believe that the aforementioned truck, which was carrying 500 gallons of diesel, hit the bridge and pulled it down at around 11:50 a.m. ET, though those are just initial findings. The bridge is estimated to be 14 feet high, which is supposed to be high enough for the truck in question to fit. Officials are going to inspect the other bridges that the truck passed under.
A hazardous materials team is working to prevent the diesel from contaminating waterways with a substance that absorbs the fuel. The highway is closed until at least Thursday since the crash still needs to be investigated and the area cleaned up. The bridge was previously inspected in February and appeared to be fine at the time.