Archive for August, 2007

As the search continues for those missing and unaccounted for, the President, and the Governor of Minnesota, as well as other public officials, are asking our nation to be in prayer for the families, and loved ones, of the victims of the tragic bridge collapse in Minneapolis. Also, be in prayer for those who are involved with the rescue operation.

Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty says, the death toll is sure to rise from Wednesday’s bridge collapse. The death toll was confirmed at four after previously being reported as high as nine, but Pawlenty says that there is no question that the number will go up, after the collapse sent vehicles, concrete and steel tumbling into the river.  He told NBC’s “Today Show,” that there are a number of cars still in the waters of the Mississippi River that rescuers haven’t been able to get to, and those cars have been submerged since last night. At least 60 people were injured in the collapse. Minneapolis Police Chief Tim Dolan said that, based on the number of vehicles thought to be on the Interstate 35W bridge at the time, there are 20 to 30 people still unaccounted for, and more bodies are likely to be recovered, as rescuers continue the search.  As many as 60 vehicles were traveling on the 40-year-old bridge when it buckled and collapsed without warning during rush hour.

Christian relief agencies like the Salvation Army have quickly responded. Three Salvation Army emergency disaster services vehicles (canteens), along with more than a dozen emergency responders, are on scene at the I-35W collapse. One vehicle is stationed on the University side, at 2nd Street SE and 8th Avenue; and another is stationed on the Washington side, at 1201 West River Road. The third unit is at the recovery area, at 354 East River Parkway. The primary focus will be to provide food and water for emergency personnel on site, as well as for survivors who are on the scene; and to provide spiritual and emotional care.

According to Chrissie Morrison, Salvation Army Disaster Services Director in the Twin Cities, “The Salvation Army is prepared to serve throughout the evening. Each feeding unit has five to six volunteers/staff members serving. The Salvation Army responds to calls for help from local law enforcement, and becomes part of the Emergency Operation Center set up in times of disaster.” Salvation Army emergency staff and volunteers are trained both in food service and Critical Incident Stress Management.

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