TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan's Coast Guard Administration (CGA) on Tuesday (Oct. 1) released surveillance camera footage of the disastrous collapse of a suspension bridge in the northeastern county of Yilan.
At around 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday, the Nanfang'ao Bridge in Yilan's Su'ao Township suddenly gave way, killing four and injuring more than 20. The bridge crushed three fishing boats beneath it, killing four migrant fishermen on board the vessels; two remain missing.
In a previously released video, a tank truck can be seen crossing the bridge, and just as it is on the verge of making it across, the structure suffers a catastrophic failure and begins to sag dramatically. The entire bridge then breaks completely free from the road on either side and crashes into the waterway below, causing a massive quantity of water to spray in all directions.
The tank truck is dragged down with the bridge and flips over before bursting into flames. In footage of the immediate aftermath, a red vehicle can then be seen speeding toward the bridge, the driver apparently unaware of the collapse, before finally stopping several meters from the precipice.
In the video released by the CGA, construction equipment and cars can be seen parked next to three fishing boats moored to a pier while a man casually walks by. Suddenly, the massive 140-meter Nanfang'ao Bridge collapses and plummets six stories into the waterway below.
A boat cruising near the bridge comes to a dead stop as a mini tsunami rolls toward it from the falling bridge. Oddly, the man sauntering down the pier appears to be oblivious to the disaster unfolding in front of him.
The video then cuts to another angle time-stamped 9:30:02, with the bridge starting its collapse at 9:30:03. The center of the structure first makes contact with the water at the 9:30:05 mark and comes to a rest at the bottom of the waterway around 9:30:10 mark, showing the entire deadly disaster lasted a mere seven seconds.
As for the reason why the bridge suddenly imploded, the initial assessment is that its vertical suspension cables, known as "hangers," snapped. After the collapse, badly frayed cables could be seen strewn across the deck of the bridge.
Extended version of the first angle posted on Twitter:
Bridge collapse in Taiwan.....unreal pic.twitter.com/vTGz9v8K95— DAP!!! (@Deetroit_Dave) October 1, 2019