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Crane Falls From New Bay Bridge Span

Bay Bridge closure

San Francisco, CA — A construction crane fell from the new Bay Bridge span on Thursday. No one was injured and no oil spilled in the midday accident.

The crane had a 160-foot boom and part of it, as well as a temporary steel trestle on it, fell toward the bay.

The ringer crane was one of two attached to the barge. It reached to the underside of the new bridge, reports The San Francisco Chronicle.

They were working together to remove a section of the steel structure that supported the deck of the bridge’s signature span. The support was no longer needed, because the tower was assembled and the suspension cable was installed.

The incident happened when the cranes were lifting the steel segment from its ends. The segment slipped loose from the lowering frame and fell to the barge. It pulled one of the cranes with it.

The steel landed on the deck of the barge and pierced one section of it. Andrew Gordon, spokesman for the Bay Bridge project, assured that no steel fell into the bay during the incident.

ABC News notes that the support structure was installed in 2009 while the bridge was under construction. It was able to support itself starting in November, so crews are taking down the temporary supports.

Their removal is expected to take months and will likely be delayed because of the crane falling. The new bridge will open on Labor Day weekend and will connect Oakland to Treasure Island. It is replacing a structure that was damaged when the region was hit by the Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989.

There was no damage to the bridge itself, other than scratches on its paint. Construction on the new span was suspended in light of the accident, though it was expected to start again on Friday. The dismantling of the temporary structure will remain halted while crews investigate the accident.

[Image via Wikimedia Commons]

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