World’s most famous engineering disasters

Engineering has been a pioneer in many human inventions and innovations and its contribution has helped shape our world. But sometimes there are some unforeseeable disasters resulting due to overestimation, failure of design, or simply insufficient knowledge.

These engineering disasters no doubt was catastrophic and halted the life of people around the accidents but at the same time, they also serve as an opportunity to learn from our mistakes.

Collapsing of the Quebec bridge

The Quebec Bridge in Canada is known to have collapsed not once but twice. First,it was in the year 1907 when the bridge suddenly collapsed during construction killing 75 workers out of 86. After just 15 seconds, the cantilever arm,the partially completed suspended span, and the south anchor arm fell into the St. Lawrence River. The government then decided to revive the project again as the rail link for the railways, so, the construction began in the year 1913. By 1916 in the month of September, the bridge once again was almost complete just a bit of the work was left in hoisting the center span and connecting it with the cantilever arms. But the span just tore from the lifts and fell straight to the river killing 13 men and injuring many others. But at last, the bridge was finished and was opened to the public a year later.

The Space Shuttle Challenger disaster

The NASA Space Shuttle Challenger flew on the 28th January 1986 and exactly after 73 seconds, it crashed and broke apart killing all seven astronauts who were on board. And the worst part is that this tragedy was shown all around the world on television during the live broadcast. On further investigation, it was found that the space shuttle’s external fuel tank exploded when the right solid rocket booster came loose and the tank just raptured.

The sinking of the RMS Titanic on its maiden voyage

The famous RMZ Titanic was a British luxury ship that sank on its maiden voyage from Southampton to New York City in 1912. The ship was considered the largest ship to be ever built and the most interesting part was that it was considered unsinkable. So, was it an engineering mistake that led to the loss of lives of almost 1500 people? Experts say yes, as it was later discovered that rivets used in Titanic were made up of low-quality iron and the watertight compartments were not even sealed individually.

These unfortunate accidents remind us of our shortcomings and present an opportunity to learn a lesson from them.