The Florida International University bridge that collapsed last March and killed six people was full of gaping cracks days before it fell on top of heavy traffic, according to photos released Thursday by the National Transportation Safety Board. The photos show four massive cracks that appear to be several inches deep in the bridge’s deck, raising the question of why FIU officials and the contractors handling the project did nothing to ensure the safety of motorists driving beneath the failing structure. Federal investigators have yet to come to a conclusion on what ultimately caused the $14.3 million bridge’s fatal collapse, but the families of those killed have already placed the blame squarely on FIU authorities and the structure’s construction and design team. “If they would have done their due diligence in closing that road, this could have been avoided,” Orlando Duran, the father of one of the victims, told the Miami Herald. The bridge’s designers had reported cracks in the structure to the Florida Department of Transportation just before the collapse, but claimed they wouldn’t pose a safety risk.
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