Reports about the collapse came into police about 6 a.m. The waste-hauling truck's boom was extended too high to go under the bridge.
"When the boom struck the bridge, it actually pulled the bridge down with it," Michigan State Police Lt. Michael Shaw observed.
No one was on the bridge when it fell.
The driver was taken to a hospital and died. He has been identified, late in the day, as 54-year-old Stanford Michael Doll of Almont.
The Southfield Freeway (M-39) was closed from Interstate 96 to Joy Road.
In a bizarre twist, Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford was on the scene mingling with observers after his car was stopped by the bridge collapse.Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford escaped danger early Friday morning, as his car would have soon been the one under the bridge. (The football player's nickname is Matty Moonball.)
One of Detroit’s biggest sports stars was quickly — and safely — picked up by a member of the team’s security, a spokesman later confirmed, saying Stafford was uninjured.
Roop Raj of Fox 2 and others report the sixth-year pro was right near the bridge when the accident occurred:
Shown is Detroit Lions QB Matt Stafford on Southfield Freeway, shortly after the time of bridge collapse.
Meanwhile, also in the Midwest, all Chicago air traffic was stopped early today after a deliberately set 6:00 am fire at a Federal Aviation Administration air traffic control facility in the Chicago suburb of Aurora, an FAA spokeswoman says.
Air travel for thousands of people across the country was thrown into disarray Friday morning after a fire closed a major Chicago-area air traffic control center that directs traffic across a large swath of the Midwest.
Mystery surrounded the interruption, as authorities reported not only that a fire closed the Federal Aviation Administration control center in Aurora, Illinois, but also that a man was found with self-inflicted wounds there.
Responders found a person suffering from cuts to at least one wrist, two law enforcement officials told CNN, citing initial reports from investigators. The person is being treated and questioned about the fire, which appears to have been intentionally set, the officials said. Investigators believe the person tried to commit suicide, the officials said.
The fire is not believed to be a terrorism act, Aurora Police Chief Greg Thomas told reporters. It appears to have been set by a contract employee, he said. Two people were injured: the male suffering from self-inflicted wounds and a man, 50, who was treated at the scene for smoke inhalation, Thomas said. CNN
Planes destined for Chicago-area airports, including O'Hare and Midway, won't be allowed to depart until at least 10 a.m. CT (11 a.m. ET) because of the fire, the FAA says. The Chicago ground stop will likely create a ripple effect for travelers around the nation.
Several postings at Twilight Language have dealt with the Aurora name game, as the theater shooting at the premiere of The Dark Knight Rises occurred in Aurora, Colorado. These are some:
There's also breaking news out of Moore, Oklahoma, of a workplace violence event, involving a beheading. I will deal with that separately, in another posting, later.