Bridge Collapse in Baltimore Sparks Wave of Disinformation Online – Here’s What Really Happened

Baltimore, Maryland – After a container ship collided with the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore, causing significant disruption to one of the busiest commercial harbors in the United States, authorities worked to assess the situation and dispel any rumors of terrorism. The vessel lost power leading to the accident, even after attempts to prevent the collision by dropping anchors and issuing a Mayday call.

Maryland Governor Wes Moore addressed the public during a press conference, emphasizing that there was no evidence to suggest terrorism was a factor in the bridge incident. Despite these statements, various conspiracy theories emerged online, attributing the collision to unfounded reasons such as cyberattacks, Israel, and diversity initiatives within corporations.

Furthermore, a video circulating online claiming to show a “large explosion” in relation to the Baltimore incident was discovered to be unrelated upon closer examination through a reverse image search. The footage was actually from an explosion on the Kerch bridge, Russia’s only land link with Crimea, in an incident that occurred in October 2022.

Russian officials stated that a truck bomb explosion had caused the fire on the Crimean bridge and accused Ukraine, who they had invaded months earlier, of being behind the incident. In a surprising turn of events, Ukraine’s domestic intelligence agency claimed responsibility for the operation, shedding light on the complexities surrounding the situation.

Footage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge collapsing indicated the involvement of the Singapore-flagged Dali container ship, which was being guided by two Baltimore port pilots at the time of the collision. The video captured moments before the impact showed the ship going dark twice, setting the stage for the tragic event that unfolded.

Officials scrambled to prevent vehicles from crossing the bridge after receiving the crew’s distress call, highlighting the swift response necessary in such crises. Misinformation surrounding the bridge collapse fuelled by conspiracy theories and false claims online continues to be a challenge, underlining the importance of verifying information before spreading it further.