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'Unbelievable' Baltimore Bridge Collapse Felt 'Like an Earthquake' — and Then 'It Got Real Quiet,' Residents Say

'Unbelievable' Baltimore Bridge Collapse Felt 'Like an Earthquake' — and Then 'It Got Real Quiet,' Residents Say

Jim Fischer, who helped build the Francis Scott Key Bridge, "never thought in a million years anything like this could happen"

<p>Harford County Md Fire & EMS PIO Media Page/Facebook</p> The Baltimore Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse

Harford County Md Fire & EMS PIO Media Page/Facebook

The Baltimore Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse
  • Witnesses who live near the Francis Scott Key Bridge are recalling the moment the bridge collapsed early Tuesday

  • “I really thought it was an earthquake or something because it shook this house so bad,” one witness said

  • The accident, in which six members of a construction are still unaccounted for, happened after the container ship Dali struck a supporting pier

Residents who live near the Francis Scott Key Bridge are recalling the terrifying moment that the bridge collapsed early Tuesday morning.

“I really thought it was an earthquake or something because it shook this house so bad,” Priscilla Thompson, who lives on the water, facing the Key Bridge, told The Baltimore Sun. “It shook it — it really rattled it — for four or five seconds. And then, it got real quiet.”

Donald Heinbuch, a retired fire chief for the city of Baltimore, said his home shook during the moment of impact.

“It felt like an earthquake,” he told the Associated Press. “Or like rolling thunder.”

Related: 6 Construction Workers Missing After Bridge Collapse as Officials Say They've Found 5 Submerged Vehicles

Heinbuch also shared what he saw after rushing to the scene.

“The ship was there, and the bridge was in the water, like it was blown up," he said.

Another resident who lives nearby told CBS affiliate WJZ-TV that the moment of impact — which sent a six-person construction crew into the Patapsco River as well as at least five vehicles — seemed “like there was a big accident right outside my door.”

<p>Harford County Md Fire & EMS PIO Media Page/Facebook</p> The Baltimore Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse

Harford County Md Fire & EMS PIO Media Page/Facebook

The Baltimore Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse

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“Then, I’ve seen all this devastation,” John Flansburg told the news station.

Numerous eyewitness accounts on X included footage of the collapse, in which the 1,200-foot-long bridge broke into pieces into the frigid water below after the container ship Dali struck a support pier shortly around 1:30 a.m.

“Wanted to know what the bang was,” Bobby Gattus said in a video posted online.

“The bridge is gone,” Gattus said. “Holy hell.”

Related: Video Shows Horrifying Moment Francis Scott Key Bridge Collapses After Being Struck by Cargo Ship

The tragedy resonates in another way for Jim Fischer, who was among those who helped build what he calls the “solid concrete” Key Bridge in the 1970s.

“I never thought in a million years anything like this could happen,” he told The Washington Post. “And what was incredible to me, is how fast it came down. It really is just unbelievable.”

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