NTSB bridge findings already criticized

  • Article by: JIM FOTI , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 27, 2008 - 2:02 PM

Rep. Jim Oberstar and lawyers representing victims of the I-35W bridge disaster decry the investigators' conclusions about the cause of the collapse and leaks of information.

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jasperu2Oct. 26, 0810:31 PM

Oberstar should be ashamed for trying to make this tragedy into a political issue and tying himself to a bunch of bottom feeding lawyers who's only interest is lining their pockets.

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Jinkens1Oct. 26, 0810:48 PM

Jim Oberstar had a background in structural engineering. If only we had paid more taxes.

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hagridOct. 26, 0810:50 PM

This whole thing has been handles so poorly. There is so much cover up and minipulation of imformation. jasperu2 - Oberstar is in no way making this a political issue. It has been clear from the begining that the current administration (read Pawlenty) has been making every effort to cover up their mistake for not being willing to spend the money (so we can cut taxes) to fix the problems before this tragedy happened. And they make us wait until after the elections to give us their final findings. What a shame this whole mess is.

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webfootOct. 26, 0810:52 PM

This is government we're talking about. Of course it's political. They're always trying to find a way or an excuse to cover their ass when mistakes are made. I believe there's more to this story than their telling. Wouldn't surprise me ONE BIT.

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stribsaloserOct. 26, 0810:56 PM

The NTSB is a political organization? Only a lawyer or politician could try to sell that argument!! Does anyone think Jim Oberstar is acting for any reason that is NOT political? Give me a break!! What does the NTSB have to gain in a political, or in any manner from any cause it may find? Are they in a conspiracy to protect the Minnesota Republican party, Governor Pawlenty, and Carol Molnau? One more reason the ONLY way to save this country is with congressional term limits and tort reform!!!!!

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solarboy96Oct. 26, 0811:05 PM

"Oberstar should be ashamed for trying to make this tragedy into a political issue and tying himself to a bunch of bottom feeding lawyers who's only interest is lining their pockets." What a waste of digital ink... Fact of the matter is, a bridge wouldn't last 30 some years if it were merely a design flaw. Perhaps the factors of safety were not great enough. Catastrophic failure such as seen on bridge that stood for 30 some years occurs because of sudden failure. There would have been clear signs of gradual underdesign metal failure if this were the case. Gusset plates also are not the primary load bearing parts of the bridge. They are merely parts of the glue holding things together. Vibration from the construction work with the heavy overload on the bridge from the equipment and the rush hour stand still traffic trying to be supported by cracked, or rusted out metal was a more likely case.

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dan816Oct. 26, 0811:06 PM

He even managed to turn the Delta Queen into political issue as well and Minnesota will never see that boat again. While the NTSB has some explaining to do, Oberstar carries very little credibility with me anymore since he became a self-declared maritime fire expert that put several people out of a job and now endangers a national treasure.

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webfootOct. 26, 0811:29 PM

Hello! The NTSB is a government agency - everything GOVERNMENT does is POLITICAL. Just as someone else here said, it's highly doubtful that the gusset plates were the sole cause. That bridge was not built for the amount of traffic it carried on a daily basis, add to the fact all the construction equipment, cement, and cars at a dead stop sitting on it. There's no way they could have anticipated any of that. Maybe the state should have spent some of that cigarette tax...err...health impact fee on fixing it instead of using it to balance their damn budget.

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jhb8426Oct. 26, 0811:51 PM

A lot of the commenters here didn't read the story. The gussets failed because of all of the stuff added over time. It's not just that they all of a sudden failed after 40 years of the original design load.

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tink0077Oct. 26, 0811:57 PM

It's amazing how some of the people posting here feel their conclusion is more valid than the NTSB conclusion. Nevermind, that the NTSB had a team of engineers working for months, spending millions of dollars studying the bridge design, loads, carrying capacity, maintenance and inspection records, running computer simulations, interviewing witnesses, inspecting comparable bridges etc. etc. to determine the cause. Nevermind all that! Here is a chance to advance all our political idealogies! The people who jumped to conclusions and blamed people with NO evidence as to the actual cause of the failure should be ashamed of themselves. Just admit you were wrong.

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