Memories of the collapse of bridges of bygone days - the Silver Bridge (at Rt. 35) at Point Pleasant, WVA and the I-35 W Bridge in Minneapolis - come to mind when a new bridge falls. Popular culture has associated Mothman sightings with such collapses. The falling of tonight's bridge on I-5 out West is not linked to any reports of winged creatures being seen in the area.
The Interstate 5 bridge over the Skagit River at Mount Vernon, Washington State did collapse Thursday evening, May 23, 2013, dumping vehicles and people into the water shortly after 7 p.m.
One individual was pulled from the water, one was seen on the top of a car, and an unknown number of people were missing in the water.
State Patrol Trooper Mark Francis said it was not clear how many were in the water or the extent the injuries. Photos showed one man sitting on the top of his red car waiting to be rescued.
Rita Miller, who works at the Riverbend RV Park, said a Navy rescue team was on the site with a helicopter with dozens of first responders. A crowd of about 1,000 people gathered at the bridge. A hovercraft was near the fifth bridge span to the north and was fighting the strong Skagit River current on the west side of the bridge during the rescue effort.
It was not clear what caused the collapse.
The four-lane north and southbound bridge, built in 1955, was used by 70,000 vehicles daily, according to 2010 statistics.