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HomeNewsFBI Agents Board Ship Responsible for Baltimore Bridge Collapse Amid Criminal Investigation

FBI Agents Board Ship Responsible for Baltimore Bridge Collapse Amid Criminal Investigation

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FBI agents recently boarded the Dali, the cargo ship that collided with the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore last month, causing its collapse. According to reports, the FBI has also opened a criminal investigation into the events that led up to the collapse.

The FBI’s inquiry will focus on whether the ship’s crew was aware of any problems with its systems before departing from port. In a statement to USA TODAY, the agency said, “The FBI is present aboard the cargo ship Dali conducting court-authorized law enforcement activity. There is no other public information available, and we will have no further comment.”

The FBI, which generally leads terrorist investigations, was expected to become involved in the Baltimore bridge collapse. An anonymous senior government official described the FBI’s involvement in the Dali inquiry as typical practice.

Following the crash, government officials quickly dismissed terrorism as a potential cause. They blamed it on a power outage aboard the ship.

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However, the FBI, which is in charge of making the final conclusion on terrorism, will conduct a thorough investigation into the possibilities.

According to the official, the Coast Guard is normally in charge of ship accidents, with the National Transportation Safety Board taking over on occasion. Both agencies have been involved with the inquiry since its commencement. 

However, due to the multifarious concerns in Baltimore about probable criminal negligence, multiple agencies will conduct a combined investigation.

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According to the official, some agencies would withdraw from the investigation once their areas of concern have been properly examined.

The investigation will also look into the events that preceded the collapse to see if federal laws and regulations were followed. This also according to an anonymous source who spoke with the Associated Press.

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Another person, who was not authorized to speak publicly, told the AP that the Dali apparently had electrical problems many hours before leaving port. Moments before the collision with the bridge, video footage shows the ship’s lights going out. 

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However, the source revealed that alarms had sounded from some of its refrigerated containers while still docked. This further signals problems with the power supply.

Erek L. Barron, the U.S. attorney for Maryland, said in a statement emailed to USA TODAY, “My office generally will not confirm the existence of or otherwise comment about investigations. However, the public should know, whether it’s gun violence, civil rights abuse, financial fraud, or any other threat to public safety or property, we will seek accountability for anyone who may be responsible.”

ALSO READ: Authorities Set to Build Temporary Alternate Channel for Essential Ships at Baltimore Port

Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott announced in a news release that the city intends to take legal action. This will be against the Dali’s owner, charterer, manager, and manufacturer, as well as any other possibly culpable third parties. He announced this on the day the FBI personnel boarded the ship,

This announcement follows a plea that was filed earlier this month in Maryland District Court by the ship’s owner, Grace Ocean Private Limited, and also its manager, Synergy Marine Private Limited. Their petition aimed to preemptively free the firms from any claims or costs. These costs exceeded $43 million resulting from the accident.

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