Baltimore workers move a crashed cargo ship that shot down a bridge

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(Reuters) – Workers in Baltimore have been preparing to dislodge a wrecked cargo ship almost as long as it took the Eiffel Tower from blocking the canal, officials said on Sunday, nearly two months after the ship shot down the Francis Scott Key Bridge, paralyzing the eastern U.S. port.

The unified command organizations overseeing the response said work would start early Monday to move the Dali cargo ship to a local marine terminal.

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore told NBC’s Meet the Press that workers are on track to fully clear the canal this month, restoring full access to the busiest port for U.S. auto deliveries

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“We will reopen this federal canal by the end of May, and within a few days we will have a huge ship, the Dali, sail out of it,” Moore said.

Federal investigators said in a preliminary report last week that the Dali lost power several times before it hit the Key Bridge. The impact caused a bridge collapse, killing six road construction workers and disrupting vessel traffic in the canal and vehicle traffic on the I-95 corridor in the northeastern United States.

Since the disaster, authorities have opened four momentary canals, allowing some navigation to resume.

Last week, crews carried out controlled explosions to remove part of the collapsed bridge from the Dali’s bow, which was necessary to then allow rescue teams to pull out the twisted metal wreckage using cranes and barges, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said. Maryland officials estimate that rebuilding the bridge will cost between $1.7 billion and $1.9 billion and is expected to be completed in the fall of 2028.

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