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What Caused the FIU Bridge Collapse? The Investigation Begins

By Eric Rubenstein, Attorney Rubenstein Law 

At least 6 people have died from Thursday’s collapse of the newly installed pedestrian bridge near Florida International University. The 960-ton, 175-foot bridge was designed as a pathway from the FIU Campus to the city of Sweetwater. An additional 10 people have been hospitalized. The authorities are still searching the debris looking for more victims.

The bridge was previously hailed as a technological innovation in safety, design, and construction. The bridge was built using a method known as “accelerated bridge construction,” or ABC, which is supposed to minimize traffic disruption and maximize safety. The bridge’s installation took only six hours.

On Friday morning, the National Information Safety Board began investigating the cause of the collapse, which remains uncertain. It was recently discovered that two days before the collapse, the lead engineer of bridge’s design company reported cracks in the bridge to the Florida Department of Transportation. 

As the cause of the collapse is investigated multiple parties could be held liable including the state, the design company, the contractor, engineers and any additional entities responsible for the bridge’s construction, inspection, maintenance, and oversight.

Negligence is the primary legal theory in which those parties can be held liable. Negligence here entails that the parties involved had a duty to properly build and maintain the bridge while protecting others from injury, that such parties breached that duty, and that the breach was the cause of the unfortunate deaths and injuries.

Rubenstein Law offers its deepest condolences to the victims and families of the bridge collapse as well as the FIU community. We also understand that the legal issues surrounding this incident can be complicated. This very tragic and fatal event will have devastating impacts on individuals and families. The personal injury attorneys at Rubenstein Law have experience litigating complex catastrophes. If you or a loved one has been injured in due to the collapse, please contact Rubenstein Law at 1-800-FL-LEGAL