Grassley: Baltimore Bridge Collapse Could Be ‘Catastrophic’ For Shipping Out Iowa Goods

Washington, DC — This week’s deadly collapse of Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge may have significant ripple effects in Iowa, as that Maryland port is a vital link in the supply chain for getting Iowa’s commodities and a range of products to overseas markets.

Iowa US Senator Chuck Grassley says he’s concerned that as long as that port is blocked by the wreckage and out of commission, the effects will be widespread.

Grassley says it’s possible Iowa companies that need to ship their commodities or products overseas via the East Coast can use another port, but most of them are farther away which would likely mean higher costs.

It’s still unclear how many people died when the bridge fell, perhaps six. Recovery operations are underway. There are calls for Congress to pass an emergency spending measure to pay for rebuilding the bridge, which collapsed early Tuesday after a support tower was slammed by a massive cargo ship, which was apparently malfunctioning.

Early estimates say rebuilding the bridge could cost $2 billion and take a minimum of two years, possibly much longer.