NTSB To Announce Likely Cause of FIU Bridge Collapse
On October 29th, the National Transportation Safety Board will announce the likely cause, according to their investigation, of the FIU Bridge Collapse. The collapse, which resulted in six deaths and eight injuries has been subject to finger-pointing from the various parties tasked with various aspects of the construction of the bridge. The NTSB will also issue recommendations and best practices so as to avoid such a collapse from ever happening again.
At the center of this tragedy was the rapid construction processes that were employed in the construction of the bridge. Also of serious concern is whether or not those involved with the construction of the bridge responded appropriately to news that there were cracks forming in the bridge.
The Cracks in the Bridge
In retrospect, it seems apparent that once there were serious cracks evident on the bridge that those with the power to do so should have closed off the bridge as well as the street below. It seems likely however, the NTSB will blame the bridge failure on the FIGG Bridge Engineers. According to initial reports, FIGG, which designed the bridge, overestimated the capacity of certain areas of the bridge to withstand the convergence of forces that would apply pressure to the bridge. This resulted in the cracking the concrete and eventually to the collapse itself.
The Federal Highway Administration says that FIGG’s engineers underestimated the load borne at one critical junction. FIGG, on the other hand, disputes their findings. FIGG maintains that the bridge would have been fine had MCM, the bridge’s main contractor, made sure the concrete used in the bridge was properly roughened prior to the collapse. However, others have noted that cracks in the concrete itself is not necessarily an indication that a collapse is imminent. The FHWA did admit that the concrete was not properly roughened, but maintained that the primary cause of the bridge collapse could be traced to FIGG’s design errors and not MCM’s failure to roughen the concrete.
Still in play is a second engineering firm that was supposed to look over FIGG’s plans. The plan for the bridge was notable because there was a lack of redundant supports and the overall complexity of the plan required a second set of eyes.
Settlements Still Forthcoming
As personal injury lawyers litigate on behalf of their plaintiffs and the companies involved in the collapse continue to point fingers at one another, it is the bankruptcy court that will oversee the process of disbursing settlements to victims and their families. One of the companies associated with the bridge, MCM, has since changed its name from Munilla Construction Management in an apparent attempt to distance themselves from the tragedy. Meanwhile, their assets are tied up in a Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Ultimately, it will be a bankruptcy judge who determines what victims of the FIU bridge collapse will get from MCM.
Talk to a Miami Personal Injury Attorney Today
If you’ve been the victim of negligence and injuries resulted from that negligence, you are entitled to recover damages related to your injuries. Talk to the Miami personal injury attorneys at the office of Alan Goldfarb, P.A. today for more details.