07:03 GMT +322 March 2019
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    In this frame from video, emergency personnel work at the scene of a collapsed bridge in the Miami area, Thursday, March 15, 2018.

    Pedestrian Bridge Collapse in Florida, Several Injuries Reported (VIDEO)

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    First responders have announced that four people died and nine others were hospitalized after the pedestrian bridge at Florida International University collapsed Thursday on a number of cars. Officials are still searching the area.

    Officials indicated during a Thursday night news conference that the homicide unit of the Miami-Dade Police Department would eventually take over the investigation.

    Miami-Dade County Fire Chief Dave Downey indicated that the nine victims removed from the scene "early on" were transported to hospitals, but did not elaborate on their conditions. A "search and rescue mode" will continue throughout the night. It has been reported that an infant was among those pulled from under the bridge, however, this has not been verified by officials.

    The bridge, located at the intersection of 109th Ave and 8th Street, was just installed on Saturday, though it was still in the construction phase and wasn't open to the public. Workers were on the bridge when it fell, fire officials said. 

    According to local reports, Miami-Dade Fire Rescue has treated a total of five patients while one other was transported to a Kendall Regional Hospital as a "trauma alert."

    At least eight cars are believed to be trapped under the bridge. Officials called all nearby medical personnel to the scene.

    FIU released a statement moments after the collapse stating that they were "shocked and saddened about the tragic events unfolding." They did not offer any further details on the matter.

    Munilla Construction, the company behind the pedestrian bridge has stated they "will conduct a full investigation to determine exactly what went wrong."

    Florida Gov. Rick Scott tweeted that he is aware of the incident and that he would be in "constant communication with law enforcement."

    White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced during the Thursday press briefing that US President Donald Trump was aware of the collapse and has offered local officials any assistance they might need. 

    "The president is aware of the pedestrian bridge collapse at Florida International University," Sanders stated. "Our brave first responders are working feverishly to save lives. We will continue to monitor the situation closely and offer whatever support is needed to the local officials and community."

    Officials with FIU hailed the pedestrian bridge as a "first of its kind" as it was built with the help of an "innovative" technique that reduced any potential risks to workers, commuters and pedestrians and even prevented traffic jams within the area, according to CBS Miami. Construction for the $14.2 million bridge began in the spring of 2017.

    Drivers have been advised to stay away from the area. The National Transportation Safety Board has launched an investigation into the bridge collapse.


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