Bridge Lawsuits Heat Up Following NTSB Hearing

May 22, 2013

Credit Chad Lampe

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet is moving forward in filing against the owners of the ship responsible for collapsing a span of the Eggners Ferry Bridge last year.

Foss Maritime’s ship the Delta Mariner crashed into the bridge that spans Kentucky Lake in January 2012. Foss faces a possible $7.1 million claim from the KyTC for the cleanup and repair costs. The claim is in response to the company's initial lawsuit to avoid damages.

A National Transportation Safety Board investigation found fault with the multiple agencies including Foss Maritime.  KYTC’s Lisa Tolliver said those results were expected. 

“The report by the NTSB Tuesday just confirmed what the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet has believed all along – that critical errors of judgment and a breakdown on the chain of command on the bridge of the Delta Mariner, coupled with lack of oversight by the owner of the vessel, Foss Maratime – were primarily the cause of the vessel’s allision with the Eggners Ferry Bridge on that night,” she said.

The NTSB also noted the Transportation Cabinet’s failure to maintain proper bridge lighting contributed to the accident.

BellSouth Telecommunications, an Aurora restaurant and several Murray citizens have also filed for damages against Foss Maritime. A tentative trial date is set for January 2015.