A bridge which was under construction on a college campus in Florida has collapsed, resulting in ‘several fatalities’, according to reports.
The bridge was designed to connect the Florida International University campus with a Miami suburb, but it collapsed just before 2pm local time.
It is not currently known how many casualties or deaths have been caused by the incidents but a reporter from the Miami Herald tweeted that the local police enforcement believed there were mass casualties.
THE FIU BRIDGE COLLAPSED OH MY GOD pic.twitter.com/JO7jfx5AoN
— Gabriela Collazo (@GabrielaRose12) March 15, 2018
UPDATE: NY Daily News has reported at least six people were found dead under the rubble.
Sweetwater Mayor Orlando Lopez said:
We have a national tragedy on our hands.
The number of total injuries is still unknown, and television news helicopters have been ordered to back away from the scene so rescuers could try and listen for sounds from any survivors.
At least eight people have already been transported to hospital from the collapse, the Miami Herald reports.
— Monique O. Madan (@MoniqueOMadan) March 15, 2018
FIU spokesperson Maydel Santana-Bravo issued a statement as rescue crews tried to rescue survivors from the rubble.
We are shocked and saddened about the tragic events unfolding at the FIU-Sweetwater Bridge.
At this time, we are still involved in rescue efforts and gathering information. We are working closely with authorities and first responders on the scene.
We will share updates as we have them.
BREAKING: Bridge collapses at Florida Intl. University, leading to "several fatalities," authorities say. pic.twitter.com/0yIwDPqSZz
— CNBC Now (@CNBCnow) March 15, 2018
The 174 foot long bridge was part of a nearly $20 million project.
Drivers are advised to avoid the area.
Florida governor Rick Scott responded to the accident on Twitter:
I have spoken with Miami-Dade County Police Chief Juan Perez about the pedestrian bridge collapse at FIU.
I will be in constant communication with law enforcement throughout the day.
Florida Highway Patrol officials have confirmed multiple fatalities after a pedestrian bridge due to open next year near the campus of Florida International University collapsed
— Sky News Breaking (@SkyNewsBreak) March 15, 2018
The elevated section of the bridge was installed on Saturday with an accelerated construction method which was advanced by the university.
It was designed as a safe travel route for students who were traveling between an FIU campus and a nearby city of Sweetwater, where 4,000 students live.
This is a breaking news story, more to follow…