Business Insider Edition

Video shows a steel bridge collapsing over a busy fishing port in Taiwan hours after a typhoon hit

Sahar Esfandiari , Business Insider US
 Oct 01, 2019, 04:00 PM
The steel bridge in Taiwan collapsed hours after a typhoon hit it.
Twitter/@KamiliaHaraQoo
  • A steel tied-arch bridge in eastern Taiwan collapsed on Tuesday morning.
  • The 140-metre-long bridge fell around 9:30 local time in Nanfangao, a fishing village on the Pacific Coast, after an oil tanker crossed it, Reuters reported.
  • Six people are seriously injured, the Associated Press (AP) reported.
  • Authorities believe five people were on the bridge at the time of the collapse, and six others are trapped in a boat underneath, the AP and Reuters said.
  • The collapse happened hours after Typhoon Mitag hit northeastern Taiwan on Monday, though it's not immediately clear if the two incidents were linked.
  • Watch a dramatic video of the collapse below.
  • For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.

A steel tied-arch bridge caved into a busy port in eastern Taiwan on Tuesday morning, hours after a typhoon hit the region.

The bridge in Nanfangao, a fishing port on the Pacific Coast, collapsed at 9:30 local time after an oil tanker crossed it, Reuters reported.

The bridge, which opened in 1998, measures 140 metres long and 18 metres high.

Nanfangao Bridge in eastern Taiwan before it collapsed on October 1, 2019.
Google Maps

According to a video of the collapse on Twitter, the oil tanker had crossed to the other side when the bridge collapsed. However, it still fell into the water and smashed three boats, the Associated Press (AP) reported.

No other vehicles appeared to be crossing the bridge at the time, according to the Twitter video.

However, the AP cited Taiwanese Interior Minister Hsu Kuo-yung as saying that five people may have been on the bridge at the time of the collapse.

According to footage posted by the AP, which can be seen below, the bridge's collapse caused other boats docked in the harbor to sway and bob on the surface.

Ten other people were sent to hospital after the collapse, six of whom with serious injuries, the AP reported. It's not clear how they were injured.

Six people are believed to be trapped in one of the boats under the bridge, the AP and Reuters reported, citing Taiwan's National Fire Agency.

"We feared that some fishermen might be trapped in the boats," Shih I-chun, the secretary of the mayor of the nearby town of Suao, told Reuters.

Disaster relief forces included an air force helicopter and more than 60 army and naval personnel, according to Agence France-Presse.

Map showing the approximate location of Nanfangao Bridge.
Google Maps/Insider

The collapse happened hours after Typhoon Mitag hit northeastern Taiwan on Monday.

It carried winds of 100 mph (160 km/h) and prompted the closure of schools and offices, as well as the suspension of 123 passenger- and cargo-flights, according to the AP.

It's not immediately clear if the storm led to the bridge's collapse. The AP reported that disaster-relief officials declined to give details.

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