Wednesday 20 June 2012

Ore Carrier STEELTON

Everyday we see motorists going too fast, running a red light and carrying on without incident. Other times a collision occurs and someone has got a lot of explaining to do. Such was the case on August 25, 1974 when the downbound Bethlehem Steel Company ore carrier STEELTON passed the limit of approach point before the Welland Canal Bridge 12 in Port Robinson was fully raised. As a result the STEELTON struck the centre span of the bridge, crashing it and both 600 foot towers either into the canal or mangled along its banks. That was quite an unbelievable sight as you can see from these photos taken by my then wife-to-be, Janice almost 38 years ago. The canal had to be closed for 15 days and the estimated damage to the bridge was over $15 million dollars but it was never replaced, hence leaving the community divided to this day. The STEELTON's pilothouse was later repaired in Port Colborne and sailed until 1978.

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