Worst Engineering Disasters Ever

#10 Tacoma Washington Bridge Disaster

The Tacoma Washington Bridge Disaster is one of the most disappointing disasters in the history of engineering. The Tacoma Narrows Bridge is a pair of mile-long (1600 meter) suspension bridges with main spans of 2800 feet (850 m). The first bridge, nicknamed Galloping Gertie, was opened to traffic on July 1, 1940, and became famous four months later for a dramatic wind-induced structural collapse that was caught on color motion picture film. Surprisingly the only fatality was a black Cocker Spaniel.

 

#10 Tacoma Washington Bridge Disaster

#9 Cleveland East Ohio Gas Explosion

This tragedy is very famous for its brutality. This disaster occurred on the afternoon of Friday, October 20, 1944. The resulting gas leak, explosion and fires killed 130 people and destroyed a one square mile area on Cleveland, Ohio’s east side. At 2:30 p.m. on the afternoon of Friday, October 20, 1944, above ground storage tank number 4, holding liquefied natural gas in the East Ohio Gas Company’s tank farm, began to emit a vapor that poured from a seam on the side of the poorly structured tank. As the gas mixture flowed and mixed with air and sewer gas, the mix ignited. In the ensuing explosion, manhole covers launched skyward as jets of fire erupted from depths of the sewer lines. One manhole cover was found several miles east.

 

#9 Cleveland East Ohio Gas Explosion
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