The key factors that contributed to the Baltimore bridge collapse

Perhaps the most obvious cause for the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore early Tuesday is what’s seen in footage from the scene: a massive cargo ship laden with shipping containers striking the bridge, which buckles into the river below.

It’s still early in the investigative process, but officials have ruled out terrorism as a motive; Maryland Gov. Wes Moore said at a news conference Tuesday morning preliminary information indicates the collision was an accident.

How the collision occurred, as well as whether any preventative measures could have helped mitigate the bridge collapse, will be a focus of the investigation led by the National Transportation Safety Board. In the day since, however, investigators appear to have attributed the collision in part to a power issue reported by the crew onboard the vessel – a Singaporean-flagged ship named DALI – just before impact. Meanwhile, experts who spoke to CNN indicated the ship struck a crucial support column, or pier, that the Key Bridge could not stand without.

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