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Family recalls drawbridge malfunction that left them seriously injured

It handiest takes a second to peer how fragile our lives are.”I’ve got scars all over my hands, my face, and my back,” stated Crystal Maynard, a mother from Umatilla, Florida.Crystal Maynard and her husband Matthew Maynard stated that second got here virtually 3 years in the past whilst crossing the North Causeway drawbridge in New Smyrna Beach.”We were sitting there waiting, then they raised the arms, so I kind of scooted up in my seat, looking off in the water to see boats or big yachts,” Crystal Maynard stated.The Maynards stated that even if automobiles went throughout, the bridge opened.”I’m following the car across the bridge and lights out. Next thing you know, we’re bloody,” Matthew stated.The Maynards stated their truck slammed into the aspect elevating up.”I was lost, confused, and I was sitting there questioning, ‘God, how did this happen? Why? Why?'” Crystal stated.She stated within the backseat, her 6-year-old daughter hit her head at the heart console, leaving her with a concussion.”The next morning, she had blood coming out of her tear ducts. It swelled up black and blue,” Crystal stated.”We’re three-quarters of a million dollars in debt for work that has been done on our back,” Matthew stated.”I cried, I cried and cried,” Crystal stated.An officer wrote in a visitors document that the bridge “raised up abruptly about 8 inches off the ground due to a malfunction” and {that a} employee advised him so.”If you’re there maintaining a bridge or working on it, why would you allow traffic to go across something that is obviously unsafe? If you’re working on it?” Crystal stated.Malfunction or miscommunication — it is came about earlier than.In North Palm Beach, a bicyclist clung to the bottom emerging underneath him.”The bridge was opening with me on top. I was going straight up in the air,” the caller advised the operator in a 911 name in North Palm Beach.”So you were holding onto the bridge as it was opening?” the operator replied.In Palm Beach County, a motive force’s automobile snagged by means of the emerging span.In West Palm, the bridge rose as a grandmother walked her motorbike throughout.”She was in the middle of the bridge when the bridge was starting up,” a witness stated in a 911 name.The lady fell to her demise.”Did she fall on the cement or on the water?” the operator replied.”I think on the cement,” the witness responded.Police stated the gentle now not handiest lied about searching for folks, however they are saying she by no means checked and attempted to hide it up, too.According to police studies, the bridge tenders in those ultimate two circumstances have been hired by means of Florida Drawbridges Inc.The Florida Department of Transportation can pay Florida Drawbridges to workforce and function 51 movable bridges within the state.”When it turns out the person was on the span when it opened. There’s really no excuse for not seeing that person,” Michael Johnston, a Volusia bridge gentle stated.As a bridge gentle in Volusia County, L.B. Knox Michael Johnston is aware of the regimen a young should apply. So does Brevard County’s Mather’s Bridge gentle, Len Meckalavage.”We radio back to them, and we acknowledge that they’re there, standby,” Meckalavage stated. “You just can’t take anything for granted. You gotta look every time. It’s a repetitive job,” Meckalavage stated.County officers stated additionally they had a repetitive downside.Motorcyclists have pushed previous down visitors palms in Daytona Beach greater than as soon as, consistent with county officers.A motive force busted in the course of the visitors palms on Mathers Bridge.Some officers stated it presentations simply how subtle their defenses are. “It’s pretty scary and it does make you aware of your own bridge, your own responsibilities out here and to make sure your operating procedures are in place,” Susan Jackson, Brevard County’s assistant public works director and highway & bridge program supervisor stated.”But you can’t, at the end of the day, stop someone from doing something completely dumb,” stated Ben Bartlett, Volusia County’s public works director.Some, just like the Maynard circle of relatives, stated protection requirements wish to be raised.”But we’re not perfect. Nobody is. We all fail one day sometime, and to leave it to human error, I wouldn’t want to be that parent to lose my kid because of somebody else’s mishap,” Crystal stated.The Maynards argue errors can cross each techniques.”How many people’s lives do they hold in their hands every day when they stand in that box?” Matthew stated.If you will have pushed, walked, or biked over a drawbridge, your existence is considered one of them.Sister station WESH reached out to the lawyer for the corporate that the Maynard circle of relatives has filed go well with in opposition to.The lawyer stated he and the corporate don’t have any remark.The Florida Department of Transportation declined to do an on-camera interview for this tale. An FDOT spokesperson did resolution a few of our questions over e mail.

It handiest takes a second to peer how fragile our lives are.

“I’ve got scars all over my hands, my face, and my back,” stated Crystal Maynard, a mother from Umatilla, Florida.

Crystal Maynard and her husband Matthew Maynard stated that second got here virtually 3 years in the past whilst crossing the North Causeway drawbridge in New Smyrna Beach.

“We were sitting there waiting, then they raised the arms, so I kind of scooted up in my seat, looking off in the water to see boats or big yachts,” Crystal Maynard stated.

The Maynards stated that even if automobiles went throughout, the bridge opened.

“I’m following the car across the bridge and lights out. Next thing you know, we’re bloody,” Matthew stated.

The Maynards stated their truck slammed into the aspect elevating up.

“I was lost, confused, and I was sitting there questioning, ‘God, how did this happen? Why? Why?'” Crystal stated.

She stated within the backseat, her 6-year-old daughter hit her head at the heart console, leaving her with a concussion.

“The next morning, she had blood coming out of her tear ducts. It swelled up black and blue,” Crystal stated.

“We’re three-quarters of a million dollars in debt for work that has been done on our back,” Matthew stated.

“I cried, I cried and cried,” Crystal stated.

An officer wrote in a visitors document that the bridge “raised up abruptly about 8 inches off the ground due to a malfunction” and {that a} employee advised him so.

“If you’re there maintaining a bridge or working on it, why would you allow traffic to go across something that is obviously unsafe? If you’re working on it?” Crystal stated.

Malfunction or miscommunication — it is came about earlier than.

In North Palm Beach, a bicyclist clung to the bottom emerging underneath him.

“The bridge was opening with me on top. I was going straight up in the air,” the caller advised the operator in a 911 name in North Palm Beach.

“So you were holding onto the bridge as it was opening?” the operator replied.

In Palm Beach County, a motive force’s automobile snagged by means of the emerging span.

In West Palm, the bridge rose as a grandmother walked her motorbike throughout.

“She was in the middle of the bridge when the bridge was starting up,” a witness stated in a 911 name.

The lady fell to her demise.

“Did she fall on the cement or on the water?” the operator replied.

“I think on the cement,” the witness responded.

Police stated the gentle now not handiest lied about searching for folks, however they are saying she by no means checked and attempted to hide it up, too.

According to police studies, the bridge tenders in those ultimate two circumstances have been hired by means of Florida Drawbridges Inc.

The Florida Department of Transportation can pay Florida Drawbridges to workforce and function 51 movable bridges within the state.

“When it turns out the person was on the span when it opened. There’s really no excuse for not seeing that person,” Michael Johnston, a Volusia bridge gentle stated.

As a bridge gentle in Volusia County, L.B. Knox Michael Johnston is aware of the regimen a young should apply.

So does Brevard County’s Mather’s Bridge gentle, Len Meckalavage.

“We radio back to them, and we acknowledge that they’re there, standby,” Meckalavage stated.

“You just can’t take anything for granted. You gotta look every time. It’s a repetitive job,” Meckalavage stated.

County officers stated additionally they had a repetitive downside.

Motorcyclists have pushed previous down visitors palms in Daytona Beach greater than as soon as, consistent with county officers.

A motive force busted in the course of the visitors palms on Mathers Bridge.

Some officers stated it presentations simply how subtle their defenses are.

“It’s pretty scary and it does make you aware of your own bridge, your own responsibilities out here and to make sure your operating procedures are in place,” Susan Jackson, Brevard County’s assistant public works director and highway & bridge program supervisor stated.

“But you can’t, at the end of the day, stop someone from doing something completely dumb,” stated Ben Bartlett, Volusia County’s public works director.

Some, just like the Maynard circle of relatives, stated protection requirements wish to be raised.

“But we’re not perfect. Nobody is. We all fail one day sometime, and to leave it to human error, I wouldn’t want to be that parent to lose my kid because of somebody else’s mishap,” Crystal stated.

The Maynards argue errors can cross each techniques.

“How many people’s lives do they hold in their hands every day when they stand in that box?” Matthew stated.

If you will have pushed, walked, or biked over a drawbridge, your existence is considered one of them.

Sister station WESH reached out to the lawyer for the corporate that the Maynard circle of relatives has filed go well with in opposition to.

The lawyer stated he and the corporate don’t have any remark.

The Florida Department of Transportation declined to do an on-camera interview for this tale.

An FDOT spokesperson did resolution a few of our questions over e mail.



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