Hi, need to submit a 1250 words paper on the topic The Sunshine Skyway Bridge Disaster. The tragedy surrounding the Sunshine Skyway Bridge Disaster is traced back to the early morning of May 9, 1980, in Tampa Bay. The disaster started when a 609-foot cargo ship accidentally hit the Sunshine Skyway Bridge and thereby causing the collapse of the segment of the bridge. The ship, the phosphate freighter Summit Venture had made an attempt at navigating beneath the two spans of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge which was guarding the entry point of the bay. At that moment, a Greyhound bus and seven cars fell over the edge of the bridge, into the water. 35 people died as a result, with only one person surviving.
The morning had been blustery and somewhat blinded by receding rainfall and wind. All the same, John Lerro as the harbour pilot had decided to let the ship through. The Summit Venture hit one of the anchor piers before hitting the cantilevered bridge’s main supporting pier. Resultantly, nearly half a mile of concrete and steel which had made up the Sunshine Skyway Bridge’s south span broke down and disappeared into the water.
Bartlett (2011) divulges that above the ship, Wesley Macintyre was driving his pickup truck which resultantly plunged 100 feet, into the bay. Interestingly, Macintyre unlike many others survived. Right behind MacIntyre’s pickup truck was the aforementioned Greyhound bus which carried 25 passengers. The events that surrounded the accident transpired too fast for the Greyhound Bus to slow down or a brake. It veered off the precipice, slammed down into the water. Thus, the pickup truck, the six cars and the Greyhound Bus crushed into the bay on this fateful morning and claimed thirty-five lives. It was only Richard Hornbuckle’s Buick Skylark which managed to stop, just inches from the edge of the bridge.
So far, almost everyone who was involved in the tragedy has passed on. MacIntyre passed on in 1989, followed by John Lerro, Al Ford and Tillie the Toiler have passed on. .