Dade: 305-761-6528 Broward: 954-510-5518 Palm Beach: 561-414-2401

FIU Bridge Collapse Caused By “Serious” Safety Violations

The collapse of the Florida International University pedestrian bridge
on March 15, 2018 shocked Floridians and people all around the world. The
still-under-construction bridge collapsed on Southwest Eighth Street in Miami,
crushing seven vehicles that had been driving below. In total six people – five
motorists and one worker – were killed, and five workers who had been on top of
the bridge at the time of the collapse were seriously injured.

The incident was subsequently reviewed by the Occupational Safety and
Health Administration (OHSA) who cited the following five companies for
worker-safety violations:

  • FIGG
    Bridge Engineers (designers)
  • Munilla
    Construction Management (builders)
  • Bolton
    Perez & Associates (engineering and inspection services)
  • Structural
    Technologies (post-tensioning)
  • Structural
    Group of South Florida (concrete construction)

A statement issued by OHSA stated that “collectively, these employers
failed to take appropriate action and provide the necessary protections to
their employees while they were working on the bridge on the day it collapsed.”

OHSA was of the opinion that the workers should have been removed from
the area as the bridge had developed cracks of a “significant width, depth and
length at critical locations.” In addition, workers had not been provided with
proper safety lines. If proper care and attention had been provided then it is
likely that the five injured workers would not have suffered such significant injuries,
and that the one worker who died would not have lost their life.

News Sources Release Pre-collapse Pictures
of Severe Cracks in Bridge

Several news sources have released pictures taken in the days leading up
to the collapse of the bridge that show severe cracks in the bridge’s
structure. Despite this evidence of a potential collapse the project’s chief
engineering team dismissed any safety concerns and ordered that construction
was safe to continue.

The five companies were fined a total of $86,658, but further action
against the potentially-liable companies may be forthcoming. The National
Transportation Safety Board is also reviewing the incident, and criminal
charges are possible although Florida law dictates that a “reckless disregard
for human life” or “a grossly careless disregard for the safety and welfare of
the public” will have to be proven.

If you or anyone you know was affected physically by the FIU bridge
collapse, then Dr. Keren H. Gomez is here to help. Dr. Gomez runs an accident
rehab clinic that will help you recovery from any physical mishap. You can
contact Dr. Gomez at 305-761-6628 (Dade), 954-510-5518 (Broward) or 561-414-2401
(Palm Beach). You can also use the online contact form on our website if you’d prefer to reach out via
email.

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