Why did the sunshine skyway bridge collapse?
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The Sunshine Skyway Bridge in Tampa Bay, Florida, collapsed on May 9, 1980 due to a combination of factors. The most immediate cause was the collision of a freighter ship, Summit Venture, with one of the bridge’s support columns.
This was compounded by a structural deficiency that allowed high winds and wave action to weaken part of the south span. The impact of the ship combined with the ensuing winds caused one of the main cables supporting the bridge to snap, resulting in the collapse of the bridge.