DESTIN, Fla. — The Coast Guard issued a press release after responding to a report of a tug boat that struck the Brooks Bridge near Highway 98 east of Destin.
A report was received by Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Mobile, Ala at about 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 20, that the tug vessel Miss Lizzy collided with the Brooks Bridge on the Intracoastal Coastal Waterway, which resulted in damage to the bridge, potable water and power lines. The Miss Lizzy was reportedly transiting under the bridge pushing four barges of heavy equipment and cranes when they collided with the bridge.
The Coast Guard established a safety zone closing the bridge to both marine and vehicular traffic until a satisfactory inspection can be completed to ensure safe transit.
The Florida Department of Transportation has completed its survey of the bridge and has since reopened the bridge to pedestrian and motor traffic; however, the center span of the bridge is still closed to marine traffic until a survey is completed to ensure that no debris will continue to fall and that previous debris did not affect the navigable channel depth under the bridge. Temporary repairs have been effected to correct the damage to the water and power lines.
The incident remains under investigation at this time.
Source: Professional Mariner
Blog post by tugboat injury lawyer Gordon, Elias & Seely, LLP