The Mianus River Bridge Collapse…30 years later

The author of this post was 9 when one of CT’s great disasters happened. My mom remembers hearing all the helicopters as they flew over that span. Now as a driver for over 20 years, if I have to drive on that bridge, well I make the sign of the cross hoping I go across it.

The bridge, now called The Michael Morano Bridge had a pin and hanger connection fail on it the morning of June 28th 1983.  The cause of the collapse was found to be years of mother nature leading to rust, poor DOT inspections and the pin and hanger assemblies are what one report from Wisconsin called fracture critical. And this was the result.

From News 12

Three people were killed on I-95 when they were caught on the bridge when it fell.  This was one of if the first really big story Cablevision News 12 covered as it signed on the air a few months prior in 1982.

Facebook has a group called You Know You’re From Greenwich Ct If… Some posters chimed in with their thoughts and stories on this event aside from your not so humble correspondent.

Georganne Hansen said “I remember getting up that morning to an early phone call from my co-worker who had all the facts wrong. Heard the helicopters and saw a couple of them sitting on the highway. It was a crazy morning. I think it took me an hour and a half to get up to New Canaan which is where I was working at the time.”

Elizabeth Varney added this tale of when someone she knew averted disaster.

“A friend of mine was driving over With his kids after a baseball game in New York And the kids were waving to the truck behind them when all of a sudden the truck disappeared. They think it was the meat truck that fell in the water and the meat was floating around Originally thought to be bodies” she said.

Virginia Ritch Woods said she was a toll collector working that night.  She called it “eerie.”

And as a fatal accident occurred this morning near exit 2 involving a tractor trailer, Judy Goss had some serious flashbacks.

“This morning I work up in Greenwich to the humming of helicopters! REALLY! It felt like I was right back on that morning. This a.m. there was a fatal accident on 95 between exits 2 and 3. Horrible coincidence” she said.

The Greenwich Time in today’s paper said not enough lessons have come from this.  This after a recent report came out saying most of the nation’s bridges are structurally deficient.

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