Dramatic video shows the moment a DC pedestrian bridge collapsed

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Dramatic video shows the moment a Washington, D.C., pedestrian bridge collapsed on Wednesday afternoon.

In the dashcam footage, posted to YouTube by user Raphael Williams, the driver can be heard yelling when the structure crumbles onto the other side of the highway. The collapse occurred at around 12 p.m. EST between Kenilworth Avenue and Polk Street NE.

According to FOX5 Washington, both lanes of Interstate-295 reopened to oncoming traffic after crews worked through the night to clear the debris from Bridge 66.

“FINAL: Road Closure. DC-295 NB/SB north of Benning Avenue. NE DC. Recovery and clean up the demolished pedestrian bridge has completed, and all travel lanes are reopened. No delays are reported at this time,” the Metropolitan Area Transportation Operations Coordination (MATOC) wrote on Twitter early Thursday.

In a series of Twitter updates, DC Fire and EMS wrote that six people were assessed on the scene, four of whom were transported to nearby hospitals for non-life-threatening injuries. 

The agencies noted that there was a hazmat unit mitigating a diesel fuel leak from a truck partially trapped beneath the bridge and that at least one other vehicle had been struck by debris.

On Thursday morning, DC Fire and EMS called the incident a “Miracle on DC 295.”

“Not only were there no serious injuries or deaths in the pedestrian bridge collapse, but the mass of debris was removed & highway reopened in little over 12 hours. An array of city agencies including #DCsBravest made this happen,” the account said.

On the day of the collapse, D.C.’s Deputy Mayor for Public Safety Safety Chris Geldart told reporters that a preliminary investigation determined it was caused by a collision that separated the bridge from its moorings and spurred multiple vehicle crashes. 

“We had a truck that came down here – a rolloff truck – has a boom in the back that’s used to pull the dumpsters up onto the truck. He had left that boom up from when he dropped his last box off and that’s what struck the bridge and brought it down,” Geldart told FOX5, adding that investigators were able to speak with the truck’s driver at the hospital to get his account and examined evidence at the scene.

In addition, while Mayor Muriel Bowser initially said that there were no structural concerns about the pedestrian bridge and Geldart said a February inspection found that it was “structurally sound,” he later backtracked.

“Bridge 66 was inspected in February 2021 resulting in a May 25th inspection report giving the bridge a rating of poor condition (4) – the threshold that prompts the multiyear planning process to replace the bridge,” he wrote. “During today’s initial readout to the media, we misstated the condition of Bridge 66.”

The bridge was previously inspected in April 2019 and is rated on a scale of 0 to 9.


The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) said in a May 27 release that it would “conduct bridge preservation and repair activities on the pedestrian bridge over Kenilworth Avenue at Lane Place NE” through June 18, 2021.”

DDOT has yet to say if that project was completed or played any part in the collapse. 

The DDOT did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment.

Fox News’ Lucas Manfredi contributed to this report.

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