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Crews Blast Baltimore Bridge Wreckage Off Cargo Ship

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Crews Blast Baltimore Bridge Wreckage Off Cargo Ship

Authorities are optimistic that the cargo ship Dali will soon be refloated after salvage crews used explosives to demolish wreckage from the Francis Scott Key Bridge, which collapsed onto the ship’s bow earlier this year.

Read also: Baltimore Port Progress: Clearing Path for Vessel Traffic After Bridge Collapse

On Monday, a salvage crew detonated a series of small explosives to remove the largest remaining section of the bridge. This controlled demolition targeted a four-ton chunk of debris nearly seven weeks after the incident, which resulted in the deaths of six construction workers and temporarily disrupted access to the Port of Baltimore. Dramatic images captured the blasts, showing orange flashes and black smoke as the wreckage plunged into the water, splashing back onto the ship.

Mayor Brandon Scott commended the Key Bridge Response Unified Command team for their precise and safe execution of the demolition, and for their dedication to the city’s recovery efforts. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Col. Estee Pinchasin expressed satisfaction with the operation, noting that a significant amount of steel had been removed. Further surveys will ensure the cargo ship sustained no additional damage.

The demolition, initially scheduled for the weekend, was delayed due to anticipated bad weather. The ship is not yet fully free, with officials planning to investigate and clear the remaining trusses and underwater debris to facilitate refloating and movement.

Maryland Governor Wes Moore announced that a navigable channel, 50 feet deep and 700 feet wide, is expected to be ready by the end of the month. Temporary channels have already enabled some ship operations to resume. Moore highlighted that large ships are now passing through the port, with about 30 vessels and barges expected in the coming week.

US Coast Guard Rear Admiral Shannon Gilreath indicated hopes to move the Dali within the next two days. Last week, Maryland State Police recovered the remains of the sixth and final victim, 37-year-old José Mynor López. López and five others were working on the bridge at the time of the collapse and perished in the disaster.

Governor Moore emphasized ongoing support for the victims’ families, noting the challenges of the recovery process and praising the team for their steadfast efforts despite the difficult conditions.