Cable from Ben Franklin Bridge falls onto I-95

Federal inspectors have joined this investigation. It was a freak accident that could have had disastrous consequences.
May 9, 2014 3:12:40 PM PDT
Federal inspectors have joined this investigation. It was a freak accident that could have had disastrous consequences.

It happened while workers were stringing cable underneath the Benjamin Franklin Bridge. The cables are support for temporary scaffolding. One of the cables in this bundle came loose around 12:30 this afternoon and clotheslined a passing car.

That car ran into the cable and was spun around on the ramp from I-95 to the Vine Street Expressway, bringing traffic to a halt for about a half hour as the workers tried to retrieve the dangling cable.

Crews had to sort through eight cables to find the right one and then pull it up from the ground.

The work is part of a major project to replace the rails for the PATCO high speed line over the bridge.

Looking at the car, it's hard to believe no one was injured. A close call that could have involved many more vehicles had it been a busier time of day.

The Delaware River Port Authority and the State Police are investigating, and a federal investigator from OSHA was also on the scene this afternoon looking into the situation.

The company doing the work is Railroad Construction Company of Pattison New Jersey. They have not returned our calls for an explanation.

They may have more explaining to do tonight if they don't post a guard near the base of the bridge. Right now, the cables are tied to a bridge abutment with rope. What's to stop a vandal from coming along and slicing the rope, sending all the cables down onto the highway?

We've notified the Port Authority and can only hope they get someone to monitor the situation.


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