Baltimore Mayor Asks CNN To Stop Airing ‘Traumatizing’ Bridge Collapse
Baltimore Police Commissioner Richard Worley, with Mayor Brandon Scott (R) and Fire Department Chief James Wallace (L), speaks at a press conference on the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge Baltimore, Maryland, on March 26, 2024.
(Photo by JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images)

During an interview on CNN, Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott chided the cable news network and others for airing “traumatizing” footage of a partial bridge collapse in his city on Tuesday.

A container ship rammed into the Francis Scott Key Bridge early in the morning, causing part of the structure to crumble into the river below. At least eight people were on the bridge at the time, and at least two have been accounted for as rescue teams search for survivors, according to authorities.

The mayor spoke with CNN anchor Sara Sidner over the phone in the hours after the crash. As they conversed, the network showed images showing the aftermath of the collapse as well as video of the very moment the ship took down a big chunk of the Francis Scott Key Bridge early in the morning.

“I’m going to be the first to ask that CNN and everyone else stop showing the video,” Scott said. “No one needs to see a possibility of their family member being severely injured or otherwise over and over and over again because it’s just traumatizing our community.”

Scott told Sidner called the collapse an “unspeakable tragedy.” He said the “focus” of emergency crews was to conduct a search-and-rescue operation using sonar to find survivors. He noted that cars were in the water and that there were people working on the bridge at the time of the collision.

“We know that there’s going to be questions about the bridge and traffic and the port,” he said. “But right now, everyone in this world’s focus should be about these souls and those families who are wondering if these people are going to walk back in the door after they walked out to work last night.”


Scott said the ship hitting the bridge was “something out of an action movie” when pressed about his first thoughts upon seeing pictures of the devastation at first light.

“It’s something you never think you would see,” he added. “And being here, right now, looking at it is even more surreal. And it just makes you think about, again, those families — those individuals that were on that bridge. Those folks even on that vessel even more because no one should have to endure.”

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