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Bridge collapse at I-580 raises questions related to 9/11
by Robert B. Livingston (gruaudemais [at]
Monday Apr 30th, 2007 9:39 AM
The San Francisco Chronicle reports with very little detail that yesterday a truck "crash melted an overhead connector to Interstate 580, causing it to collapse." An explosion, described in another article, was "so powerful and hot that it melted steel and brought down a freeway...."

This raises questions relevant to many persons questioning the official 9/11 Commission Report.
April 30, 2007
San Francisco

In an article titled "THE MAZE MELTDOWN: Free rides today as transit leaders work on plan" the San Francisco Chronicle reports today that a truck "crash melted an overhead connector to Interstate 580, causing it to collapse."

An explosion, described in another article, was "so powerful and hot that it melted steel and brought down a freeway...."

"Melted steel?"

The second story states that witnesses and law enforcement officials are responsible for the assessment of how the bridge came down.

To many persons who have been asking questions about the official explanations about the destruction of World Trade Center buildings #1, #2, and particularly #7 on September 11, 2001 any description of steel melted by a fire or a fuel explosion raises relevant questions.

Many (among them 9/11 Truth physicist Steven E. Jones who have investigated and described the necessary high sustained temperatures needed to melt steel) need to ask what actually happened yesterday at the MacArthur Maze, a site which is so critical to local transportation needs that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has declared a state of emergency.

According to Project Censored, Jones asserts that "No steel-frame building, before or after the WTC buildings, has ever collapsed due to fire. But explosives can effectively sever steel columns."

What comparisons can be made, or need to be made between the I-580 bridge collapse and the 9/11 WTC destructions?

Other questions:

Why do photos of the crash site show chunks of collapsed concrete bridge-- and not fine powdered dust as was noted at the 9/11 WTC sites?

Who are the witnesses cited by the Chronicle of the Sunday crash?

Why did the badly burned truck driver James Mosqueda have to walk "a mile and a half in all -- first along the overpass where he crashed and then for at least 13 blocks through the desolate streets of West Oakland -- to an Arco gas station, where he approached a cabdriver and asked for a ride to a hospital"?

How fast did emergency officials learn about and respond to the accident?

What parts of the bridge sustained damage? What actually caused the damage?

What is the truck driver's explanatation for crashing?

What other questions can be asked?

To some, linking questions about this local catastrophe to events on 9/11 may seem ludicrous.

To myself and others who have become convinced that the Official 9/11 Commission Report was (In Dr. David Ray Griffin's words) a "571-page lie" all questions are fair-- particularly when the Bay Area's leading newspaper chooses to title its leading article today about the bridge collapse as a "MAZE MELTDOWN".

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by paz
Monday Apr 30th, 2007 11:15 AM
local TV news reports sunday morning showed the fire and reported it at about 2,000 degrees F.
The truck driver was going too fast around the corner and hit a support column. His tanker full of gasoline caught fire and melted the steel reinforcements in the concrete and brought down the overpass. If anything, it shows that a fire fueled by fuel can get hot enough to melt steel, and shows the 9-11 hoax movement to be suspect. There was less dust than NYC 9-11-01 because only a relatively small section of the freeway collapsed, not a huge tower full of furniture, paper, drywall, electronic equipment, etc.

the driver had to walk to get help because it was 3 am, he was dazed, there is nothing nearby, and maybe he didn't have a cell phone. KQED reported that the driver had been in an accident last year, also while driving a tanker truck.

again, this event shows that a fire can bring down steel and concrete, or are you suggesting some clandestine conspirators pre-set some explosives for a timed demolition?
by Robert B. Livingston
(gruaudemais [at] Monday Apr 30th, 2007 1:19 PM
The Chronicle at SFGate adds now to the story.  Not only does it reiterate steel becoming like melted plastic, it also claims that the truck vanished: "No sign of the truck remained by daybreak."

It claims a witness, Isaac Rodriguez a 53-year-old sanitation supervisor  with access to a telephone "regretted not thinking to send a vehicle up to get the injured man while he and a co-worker stood for some 40 minutes watching the freeway burn."

SFGate now reports that the truck driver James Mosqueda "managed to get down and hail a taxi to Kaiser Oakland Medical Center."  It does not now mention his mile and a half walk to a gas station where he hailed a cab.

SFgate reports about another witness, a possible example of the "Genovese syndrome," and a Caltrans workers explanation of why there are no photos of truck wreckage in the news.

Jennifer Summers, 36, was driving from her costume-design job in San Francisco home to the Oakland hills when she saw black smoke and realized the freeway was on fire. She quickly pulled off and looped around so she could see what was going on.

When she got out of her car, flames were shooting into the sky over multiple layers of freeway, and she could hear loud crackling and explosions.

"There were bright, bright orange flames and they were huge," Summers said. "There were cars driving through the flames. The first cars slowed down like they didn't know what to do and then kept going. I was shocked."

Summers said dozens of vehicles stopped to watch as the flames grew and the freeway collapsed with a horrendous sound in a torrent of fire and rubble.

"There was nothing you could do," she said. "I'm thinking, 'Oh my God, this is going to be a nightmare, with the traffic problems we already have.' "

No sign of the truck remained by daybreak. A Caltrans worker held up his thumb and forefinger an inch apart to describe how big the tanker was by then.

Quite amazing! 
Not only does SFGate find it worthwhile to report the melting temperatures of various substances today-- Elizabeth Gettleman at the Mother Jones blog reported yesterday about the important temperatures needed to melt steel:

"An interesting note, one engineer who studied the WTC explosions for the National Science Foundation said that the freeway collapse was quite similar. Apparently the fireball erupted precisely at the weak point of the skyway - the underside of the pier where all of the supporting steel girders are bare and unprotected by concrete or anything else, said Berkeley civil engineering professor Abolhassan Astaneh-Asl. The steel supports were baked at 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit (the fire reached 2,000 degrees), the point at which steel turns to rubber, causing the steel to buckle and the double-decker freeway to collapse completely."

by Robert B. Livingston
(gruaudemais [at] Monday Apr 30th, 2007 3:51 PM
Other interesting observations:

Freeway Collapse Bears No Relation To WTC Buildings

On fire initiated collapse
The two 767's that struck the Twin Towers weighed @274K pounds and were traveling in excess of 450mph, while the fuel tanker truck that crashed on the interstate weighed @80K pounds and was probably going around, say, 80mph.

Plus, the collapsed interstate didn't have, by conservative estimates, a hundred and twenty million pounds of WTC towers bearing down on it, like the crash and burn zones of the Twin Towers did.

Finally, the tanker was full of gasoline which ignites at 495 degrees F, and the majority of the fuel burned up and away into the air from the non-combustable overpass, regardless how hot it eventually burned. OTOH, probably four million pounds of flammable materials were soaked and ignited by the jet fuel in the WTC, which of course, burned up into the collosal structural mass above the severly damaged.

Death ray from space, anyone?

by repost
Monday Apr 30th, 2007 11:17 PM
Steve Jones sent in an email this morning -

I just finished an interview with Alex Jones, and an engineer named Alex from Bothell, WA came on with further comments (stating that the freeway failure and the Towers collapse were like comparing "apples with -- dumptrucks").

Here are the main points I raised:

1. With further data, if released, we expect it will be shown that the steel warped and the bolts failed, but that steel DID NOT MELT.

2. Even if it did, this does not account for the other observations at the WTC -- in particular the RAPID (near-free fall) drop of the buildings, the horizontally ejected beams, the considerable pulverization (not seen at the freeway). See papers in the for details. (I referred in particular to papers by Ross, Ryan, Szamboti and Legge.)

3. The microspheres in the dust which I have analyzed are NOT STEEL. Rather they show high aluminum (typical 20% by weight) and Sulfur as well as iron. The spectra are totally unlike WTC steel (which I also analyzed using X-EDS) but match well the signature observed in microspheres produced by thermite analogs.

4. Alex (Wa) adds that the very large steel columns in the WTC provide an enormous heat sink, unlike the thinner bolts etc. in the freeway overpass.


Other issues to keep in mind . . . (not SJ)

A significant difference from the WTC collapses is that the intact structure below the fallen overpass section of the highway in Oakland did not collapse at all, but withstood the fall of the overpass, unlike the many intact floors of the WTC. The failed section of concrete slab fell probably 20 feet or so onto the lower section, yet it stood.

The idea that dozens and dozens of intact floors of intact steel structure in the WTC Towers would collapse through themselves is essentially ridiculous. If you are inclined toward engineering, I recommend Gordon Ross's paper in the Journal which examines this bizarre behavior and explains why even if the collapses had initiated, they should never have continued downward -

Momentum Transfer Analysis of the Collapse of the Upper Storeys of WTC1
by Gordon Ross

Also, Jim Hoffman's 9-11 Research, summarizes some facts to consider about steel and fires -

At temperatures above 800º C structural steel loses 90 percent of its strength. Yet even when steel structures are heated to those temperatures, they never disintegrate into piles of rubble, as did the Twin Towers and Building 7. Why couldn't such dramatic reductions in the strength of the steel precipitate such total collapse events?

* High-rise buildings are over-engineered to have strength many times greater than would needed to survive the most extreme conditions anticipated. It may take well over a ten-fold reduction in strength to cause a structural failure.

* If a steel structure does experience a collapse due to extreme temperatures, the collapse tends to remain localized to the area that experienced the high temperatures.

* The kind of low-carbon steel used in buildings and automobiles bends rather than shatters. If part of a structure is compromised by extreme temperatures, it may bend in that region, conceivably causing a large part of the structure to sag or even topple. However, there is no example of a steel structure crumbling into many pieces because of any combination of structural damage and heating, outside of the alleged cases of the Twin Towers and Building 7.

Other references -

The Core Meltdown Theory
The Fire-Melts-Steel Idea Was Promoted by Experts

The Fires' Impact
How the Towers' Fires Affected the Structural Steel

Proof That The Thermal and Gravitational Energy Available Were Insufficient to Melt Steel in the Twin Towers and 7 World Trade Center on 9/11/01 (April 2007)
by Terry Morrone

Freeway Collapse (an early review with images, there will be more later on)
by Robert B. Livingston
(gruaudemais [at] Tuesday May 1st, 2007 6:21 AM
May 1, 2007
San Francisco

Today, SFGate provides an interactive media flash of crash details. Only... where are all the details?

As one clicks through the flash media which SFGate is posting today one can view the truck driver's journey and a good view of the scene when the truck blazes.

Oddly, the flash media does not mention any explosion. Instead it emphasizes that flames (estimated at 3,000 degrees F.-- who estimated this?) from the truck caused a lattice of structural steel beams above it to melt.

The view shows a crumpled truck on fire. Click all you want-- but the flash does not show an explosion, or dramatic beams melting-- or the bridge melting... or falling-- or the truck...vanishing (as reported earlier)!

What a waste of story-telling ability and graphic talent!

Maybe more information will be forthcoming?

To view the SFGate interactive go to:
by Yo Mama
Tuesday May 1st, 2007 1:19 PM
The only question that need be raised is "hmmm, if gasoline can melt a bridge, isn't it possible that JP-4 can melt a building?" And as for powdered concrete, the explaination is simple... the bridge didn't fall thousands of feet while grinding against other concrete chunks during the whole fall.

Really, I give it 48 hours before some conspiracy nut blames this one on Bush too. I can hear it now "Awefully convenient this happened near Berkley, CA where the center of liberal democrat thought is. It's almost like someone was sending us a message. It's Bush!" Uh no... it's God.
May 1, 2007
San Francisco

Earlier this evening KGO ABC 7 local news reported that Hassan Astaneh, a professor of structural engineering at UC Berkeley will be in charge of studying the collapse of the bridge at I-580.

On the day of September 11, 2001 Elizabeth Farnesworth interviewed Astaneh on the PBS Newshour With Jim Lehrer program. Farnesworth introduced Astaneh as then helping develop guidelines for the American Institute for Steel Construction which "would help structures withstand terrorist attack."

From the interview:

HASSAN ASTANEH: "All I can tell you is if there's any positive thing here today is that actually the fact that these buildings were steel structures. When we had the Oklahoma City tragedy, that structure was concrete. When it happened the concrete could not tolerate the impact and the columns were pretty much collapsed and the whole building collapsed and there was no time for people to get out of the building. In this case, because the structures were steel structures, the columns were able to tolerate easily the impact. Even they could tolerate the fire if we were able to reach the fire and extinguish the fire. But since it wasn't possible, the fire was too intense, and then the steel lost its strength and collapsed after one hour. But that one hour apparently was enough for many people, as I heard, in fact, from Ron when we were sitting outside, that his firm had people in that building and they were able to evacuate from the 91st floor after the fire started. So they were out before the collapse. So one positive thing I see is that at least we were lucky in a sense that the collapse actually happened in a progressive way, not in a very sudden, immediate after attack. So I see a very, very positive point in the design of these buildings that they were really strong, as Ron mentioned, and they were really designed well. But unfortunately they could not tolerate that intense fire due to the jet fuel perhaps."

So there one finds similar words heard over and over from those many who defend the official 9/11 Commission Report: "the fire was too intense, and then the steel lost its strength and collapsed".

Similar words were used by an unidentified passerby interviewed in the street by FOX News shortly after WTC 1 and WTC 2 were destroyed.

A Very controversial film "The 911 Solution the Big Clue Everybody Missed" includes this interview which was censored by Google but can be viewed at Youtube at:

In the short film (produced by BrassCheckTV) which provides very little documentation other than providing the undated clips, the filmakers ask these questions about the unidentified man: "Firemen and engineers didn't understand the collapse, but this bozo on the street did?" and "Who talks like this?"

Professor Astanah's websites:

Other Link:
KGO News website:
by Robert B. Livingston
(gruaudemais [at] Wednesday May 2nd, 2007 6:56 AM
2 May 2007
San Francisco

The SF Chronicle today describes Professor Hassan Astaneh role in investigateing the I-580 bridge collapse:

A group of UC Berkeley researchers will also gather samples and conduct tests to help determine factual information about the crash, fire and collapse that can be used for future scientific study.

The "Collapse group,'' a three-member team headed by structural engineering Professor Abolhassan Astaneh, received a $25,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to collect evidence, photograph the site and test samples. The team could determine such things as the temperature of the fire, the length of time the structure was exposed to the fire and the sequence of events that led to its collapse.

Early indications, he said, are that one of two segments of the I-580 connector fell when its steel girders warped; the other apparently fell when the connections holding it to its support columns failed. Astaneh, who also researched the collapse of the World Trade Center, and the I-880 Cypress Structure in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, said he will have preliminary findings in a couple of weeks.

"There are parallels between the failure of the MacArthur Maze ramps and the collapse of the World Trade Center towers," he said. "Both incidents were caused by a massive fire, fed by a large amount of fuel, weakening the steel structure.''

by Ernst Mecke, Dr. rer. nat.
Wednesday May 2nd, 2007 9:32 AM
Considering how far the driver had to walk before getting help, was he perhaps under way at a time when the roads usually are empty, and was that perhaps so because he had some especially dangerous cargo in his truck? Just imagine that he had a truckload of concentrated nitric acid on board, or liquid oxygen, or something similar highly oxidizing. Imagine further that he crashed his truck, that the truck's fuel was mixed with the oxidizing cargo (leading to an explosion), that the heat of the reaction produced a cloud of oxygen (or similar) in which the steel of the bridge was able to burn ... - because, in pure oxygen iron can burn with a flame.
One can speculate still further, but before doing so it would be pretty urgent to get more information about the details.
by Robert B. Livingston
(gruaudemais [at] Thursday May 3rd, 2007 7:52 AM
May 3, 2007
San Francisco

For the record:

Tuesday, May 1, 2007 Letters to the Editor (San Francisco Chronicle)
"Myth debunked"

Tuesday, May 1, 2007 Editorial (San Francisco Chronicle)
"Mending the maze"

Thursday, May 3, 2007 Letters to the Editor (San Francisco Chronicle)
"Fuel for theory"

by NYC_Chic
Thursday May 3rd, 2007 9:29 AM
This raises the question for me of why the Towers turned to dust. The bridge collapsed in this instance but if you look at the pictures of the aftermath, you see the roadway, the steel mesh supports and the posts. The bridge did not turn to a big cloud of dust. Also, why are the news reports saying the bridge melted, the steel melted and there were pools of molten steel at the site? The link below is of pictures of the bridge after the fire was extinguished. This disproves that being what happened:
by Robert B. Livingston
(gruaudemais [at] Thursday May 3rd, 2007 10:33 PM
Why care about the comparisons of the I-580 Bridge and the WTC disaster?

Primarily-- one should care because it helps illustrate how the media destorts and obscures the truth and attempts to influence what we will remember about events.

In the case of the I-580 bridge-- it is telling that the San Francisco Chronicle, for instance, immediately used the example of the bridge collapse in a backhanded way to diminish arguments used by persons who believe that explosives were utilized to bring down the WTC buildings on 9/11. Over a number of days-- it drummed this subtheme throughout its reporting on the bridge disaster. Why? That is a good question. Perhaps it has a stake in keeping people ignorant about the real cause of how and why 9/11 happened. Or, perhaps, it is simply a method to fuel controversy for ratings, much the same way it exaggerated conflict between cyclists and drivers during San Francisco's monthly event called "Critical Mass." (More:

The bridge and the buildings have much in common-- superficially-- but in reality are very different-- as were the crashes that were involved.

There are plenty of questions left to ask about both incidents.

This recent news report adds to the compelling evidence that WTC 7 was brought down by explosives on 9/11:

Do not expect this as front page news in the Chronicleanytime soon-- although perhaps it should be.
May 4, 2007
San Francisco

Concluding that "[t]he intense heat from the fire eventually melted the connector ramp over the truck -- the road carrying traffic from the Bay Bridge to eastbound Interstate 580[,]" the San Francisco Chronicle web presence SFGate today provides excerpts of 911 Emergency Call Center recordings provided by the California Highway Patrol.

SF Gate reports "that many motorists and emergency dispatchers were confused as to where exactly the explosion occurred and whether a vehicle or building -- or both -- were on fire."

The San Francisco Chronicle also reported today:

"In calls to dispatchers that were recorded by the California Highway Patrol, drivers struggled to describe the exact location of the explosion, first reported at 3:41 a.m. Sunday, giving locations that ranged from the Bay Bridge itself to Market Street in West Oakland to "near the IKEA and Best Buy" stores in Emeryville."

Excerpts of 911 tapes related to maze meltdown

Link to audio:

Motorists who called 911 weren't sure where fire was
May 4, 2007
San Francisco

Asking "where did you read the story that explains the context of the collapse?" KALW 91.7 Your Call Radio broadcast a media roundtable program this morning and virtually ignored the subject this week.

Archived audio normally available soon at
by Robert B. Livingston
(gruaudemais [at] Friday May 4th, 2007 11:29 AM
Professor Jim Fetzer of Scholars for 9/11 Truth ( reacts to a blog posted by Jay Bullock "Fire + Steel = ? " (

Fetzer says that the fire from the gasoline tanker was actually hot enough to make the steel melt, whereas the jeyt-based fuel fire at the WTC was not hot enough.

Fetzer also reports:

1. None of the columns supporting the highway collapsed.

2. Although one highway section fell on another, it did not bring about a "pancake collapse".

3. There was no pulvarization of concrete.

Download audio excerpt or source program at
by observer
Friday May 11th, 2007 12:48 AM
This melting highway story is a cover story in an attempt to debunk the 911truth movement. The evidence is overwhelming. This new event is trying to sway public opinion into believing the lie about the steel melting in the WTC. It was brought down guys? Study the evidence! Oh yeah, where is the evidence that fuel melted the highway section. Now there is some UCB puppet (an Iranian for greater effect) babbling about the similarities. The big lie tactics are becoming more obvious all the time. Wake up people!
by Robert B. Livingston
(gruaudemais [at] Friday May 25th, 2007 7:56 AM
May 25, 2007
San Francisco

Not only does the San Francisco Chronicle dispense with the tendentious word "melt" in today's headline article at SFGate-- it describes the place where the bridge "collapsed" as being where a "gas tanker truck exploded last month."

by WTC had 100000x the energy
Friday May 25th, 2007 8:09 AM
>>2. Although one highway section fell on another, it did not bring about a "pancake collapse".

The weight of one stretch of highway is a lot less than many stories of a building.

3. There was no pulvarization of concrete.

With more pressure, more weight and a longer burning time, more fuel and high winds (which usually exist when you get that far up in a tall buidling), it makes sense that the initial collapse looked larger at the WTC. In addition once the building started to collapse the energy of the falling material was much higher (due to both a lot more material and a longer falling distance)
by lucian
Thursday Aug 2nd, 2007 4:01 AM
buildings do collapse due to fire, that's why we have fire regulations that take into account everything that may burn and the heat they can release when burning.
There is no reason to go too far with the presumptions in this bridge's PARTIAL collapse. You may point out that there was no "pancaking" - the lower lane didn't even crash down and was only dented - which may make a point as to how strange it is that WTC went down as it did.
suspecting as much as the author does that something very wrong happened on 911 i also connected the information and looked up the articles on this bridge. i have spoken with engineers i work with and they found the collapse very plausible. But to point out: the bridge seems to be entirely made of concrete, so talking about "melting" in the media may as well be an attempt to reverberate and reinforce the official story on 911.

best wishes
bucharest, RO
by Robert B. Livingston
(gruaudemais [at] Monday Oct 29th, 2007 9:48 AM
This update was posted at SFGate this morning:
Although the physical properties involved at the Bridge collapse and 9/11 destruction are largely unrelated-- there is a link which is how the media and "experts" spin their respective stories to confuse the public and delay real investigations.

Update on the Bay Area I-580 Bridge

Professor Abolhassan Astaneh, is a link to 9/11.

He is the same "expert" who appeared on the PBS Lehrer Newshour on 9/11/01-- and spoke the same line that the unidentified yahoo gave in a street interview earlier in the day: that the buildings came down because the fires were too intense.  Now he has been in charge of investigating the I-580 Bridge disaster that happened earlier this year.

Initially, The Hearst-owned Chronicle fanned the fires of obfuscation by calling the bridge a "meltdown" which echoed the supposed meltdown of steel at the 9/11 WTC.  In this update, they have shifted the meaning from the melting of the bridge itself to a breakdown of traffic movement at the maze about the incident. 

Motivational speaker?  What a curious coincidence to now report just 3 days before William Rodriguez, one of the 9/11 Movement's most inspirational and motivating speakers is set to appear at a major event here in the Bay Area.

SFGate further obfuscates the location of the bridge disaster by locating it I-880 in this latest ubdate.  It does not mention I-580 which was critically harmed and which researchers may use to identify the disaster.
In the earliest reports, the disaster was described as:

"The accident, in which a tanker truck carrying gasoline crashed and exploded on a portion of freeway that connects Interstate 80 to southbound Interstate 880, decimated two major segments of the MacArthur Maze. The crash melted an overhead connector to Interstate 580, causing it to collapse. Both areas of those freeways have been closed, prompting widespread fear of traffic nightmares."

It has never been clear what happened to the truck (which was said to have virtually disappeared) ... and it is amazing that the truck driver himself is inaccessible despite having become a motivational speaker.

The investigation of this relatively small incident seems to lack focused logic and has become confused by layers of bureaucracy.  How convenient-- as an excuse for why investigations elsewhere
(namely regarding Building 7 at the WTC) remain confused and inconclusive.

All weird. 

Now if we can figure out why Nancy Pelosi keeps impeachment off the table....