Thanks Wildabeast, believe me when I say I am glad I was not also. None of my family and friends were involved either so I feel thankful for that. One of my co-workers was on his way home though and he was only about twenty minutes away from the bridge when the collapse happened. I sure was glad to see his ugly face at work yesterday morning.
I am sure your friends are OK, luckily it appears that not as many people were hurt or killed as first believed. Right now the toll stands at 6 dead, about 111 injured and they suspect only 8 more missing. While horrible as it is, it could have been much worse than it already is.
While the bridge was full, traffic was moving slowing because of 1) the rush hour and 2) it is a law around here to slow down when driving by working crews, you did not have cars traveling at 60mph hurtling off the bridge into the river. Given the distance needed to stop a vehicle at that speed, fast moving rush hour traffic could possibly have meant a lot more injuries and deaths than occurred.
One very inspirational thing about this whole incident was the fact that when this happened bystanders and even some of those involved in the bridge collapse themselves took risks to help those around them that needed it. The way the media likes to play up the bad side of human nature we sometimes forget that there are very many good hearted people among us. It made me feel good to know that my neighbors would do that to help out those in need.
MaraM, the bridge that collapsed was a steel arch bridge while the one the people were standing on is a stone arch bridge, two entirely different designs and totally unrelated to each other.
If anything is going to come from this it is going to be increased awareness of how we need to put more effort into maintaining the nation's (any nation's) infrastructure. You can't just build this stuff than walk away saying job well done, you have to maintain this stuff as well and we haven't been doing as good a job at this we should have.
There is no justice, there is just us.