Baltimore Bridge Collapse Kills 6 Immigrant Workers, Highlighting Crucial Role in Dangerous Jobs

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Six people are missing and presumed dead after a 984-foot cargo ship hit the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore, causing the bridge’s collapse early Tuesday morning. All six have been identified as immigrant construction workers originally hailing from Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras. Maryland Governor Wes Moore said the crew on the ship was able to issue an emergency mayday call before colliding with the bridge, which allowed authorities to stop incoming traffic and prevent more casualties. However, reports say the workers already on the bridge were not given similar warnings. “The question we should be asking about is why the folks on that bridge … had no direct line to emergency dispatch when they are clearly working in a potentially hazardous environment,” says journalist Maximillian Alvarez, the editor-in-chief of the Baltimore-based organization The Real News Network, who has been closely following the story and how it has affected immigrant and working-class communities. “What does this story actually show us? That immigrants are filling our potholes at night so that we can have a smooth drive to work in the morning,” Alvarez says. “I hope people can see this and see the humanity in us.”

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