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Cargo ship that struck the Key Bridge leaves Baltimore 3 months after collapse, 11 crewmembers remain

Dali, ship that struck the Key Bridge, to leave Baltimore 3 months after collapse
Dali, ship that struck the Key Bridge, to leave Baltimore 3 months after collapse 01:13

BALTIMORE -- The massive, heavily damaged Dali cargo ship left Baltimore on Monday morning, 12 weeks after it struck the Francis Scott Key Bridge, causing its collapse and pinning the ship for months.

The ship set sail from the Port of Baltimore to Norfolk, Virginia for extensive repairs.

The 984-foot-long ship was trapped under bridge debris for nearly eight weeks after the disaster, which killed six construction workers, crippled the Port of Baltimore and demolished part of I-695. 

Some Dali crewmembers stay behind

A replacement crew joined four members of the ship's crew to set sail. Those four will then return to Baltimore and join seven other crewmates who must remain in the city.

Synergy Marine, the company that manages the ship, told WJZ they are still working to get the remaining 11 crew members home as quickly as possible, but a charity assisting the crew said those people are set to be housed in Baltimore during the ongoing litigation surrounding the incident. 

Grace Ocean, the ship's owner, will provide food and lodging for the 11 crew members staying in Baltimore.  

These are the high-ranking members of the ship, including officers. Ten of them are from India and one is from Sri Lanka. Depending on how long litigation takes, they could stay in the city for a year or more.  

The ship's other 10 original crew members were cleared to leave the U.S. on Friday. 

City, state suing over Key Bridge disaster

Baltimore City is suing the Singapore-based owners and managers of the Dali, alleging they were negligent in letting the ship leave the Port of Baltimore without failing to fix known power problems.

The State of Maryland, which owned and operated the Key Bridge, is expected to hire five law firms to assist in its litigation over to the disaster. 

Six days after the bridge collapse, Grace Ocean and Synergy Marine filed a joint claim seeking to free them from liability or limit damages to the value of the ship and estimated revenue, which sits at about $44 million.

The ship's owner also declared general average, asking cargo companies with products on board to chip in for the cost of "voluntary lost cargo".  

Investigations ongoing

The Dali lost electrical power hours before leaving the Port of Baltimore and crashing into the Key Bridge, according to a preliminary report released in May by the National Transportation Safety Board, which is investigating the crash.

The preliminary report provided a synopsis of factual information collected during the on-scene phase of the investigation. A final NTSB report, which will include conclusions and safety recommendations, should come in one or two years. 

You can read the full NTSB report here.  

The Federal Bureau of Investigation is also investigating what led up to the collapse. The agency raided the ship in April.

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