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Forbes Avenue Bridge Collapse in Pittsburgh Injures 10

February 1, 2022

Forbes Avenue Bridge Collapse in Pittsburgh Injures 10

On Friday, January 28, 2022, 10 people were injured as the Forbes Avenue Bridge in Pittsburgh, PA suddenly collapsed. The momentous collapse occurred just hours before President Biden was to arrive in Pennsylvania to give a speech on his new infrastructure law. Fortunately, no one died in the collapse, however, four required hospitalizations. 

What Happened

The collapse occurred around 6:30 am, with vehicles still in the middle of traversing it as it fell more than 100 feet toward the ground. The Forbes Avenue bridge is frequently traveled, with an estimated 14,000 drivers utilizing it on their way to Wilkinsburg, Squirrel Hill, and Regent Square.

At the time of the collapse, four passenger cars and a bus were on the bridge. Some vehicles were completely rolled over or flipped onto their side in the snow-covered ravine, with emergency personnel setting up a “daisy chain” to rescue the victims trapped down below. The incident also caused a gas line rupture that was immediately shut off to prevent a further catastrophe. 

Other Risks Involved

Even though no one perished in the collapse, victims of the collapse were still facing severe injuries both as a result of the crash and being exposed to the harsh elements. At the time of the collapse, temperatures outside were at a high of 28, putting injured victims at risk of frostbite, hypothermia, and other cold weather-induced conditions. 

Jon Atkinson, a local paramedic who ended up using his own vehicle to help pull victims out of the ravine, echoed this sentiment, stating, “Even someone who’s not critically injured, exposure to the elements is definitely a big problem.” 

Poor Maintenance of the Bridge

While the investigation into what caused the collapse is still ongoing, many experts agree that it most likely had to do with poor maintenance. The Forbes Bridge was about 50 years old, and according to investigators, not in the best of shape. In fact, between the years of 2011 and 2017, the bridge was rated as being in “poor” condition, per annual inspection reports. According to the city’s mayor, the Forbes Bride was last inspected back in September. 

According to State Senator, Jay Costa, an assessment of other bridges in the area needs to be conducted as soon as possible. Per Costa, “It hasn’t been done, I believe, for quite a while.” The city of Pittsburgh has over 400 bridges, with many of them in need of necessary repairs. When referencing the Forbes Bridge, Costa said, “This was not a high-priority bridge.”

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is currently investigating the cause of the collapse. According to Jennifer Homendy, personnel with NTSB, the team is looking for “…signs of corrosion, [and] signs of fatigue cracking” before bringing the evidence back to the company’s headquarters. 

Negligent bridge maintenance is a serious matter. If you or someone you love was injured in the Forbes Bridge collapse or another type of bridge collapse in Pennsylvania, contact Matzus Law for a consultation. 

Contact a Pittsburgh Personal Injury Lawyer to Discuss Your Bridge Collapse Accident Case in Pennsylvania

Did you or a loved one sustain serious injuries due to a bridge collapse accident in Pennsylvania? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive personal injury attorney on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, and deserve. The skilled attorneys at Matzus Law, LLC represent clients injured because of bridge collapses in Pittsburgh, Butler, Greenburg, Washington, and throughout Pennsylvania. Call 412-206-5300 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 310 Grant Street, Suite 3210, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15219.

The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.

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