A bridge leading to a lighthouse in Maine collapsed on Saturday leaving 11 people injured.
Around 1 p.m., tourists who were attempting to make their way to the Doubling Point Lighthouse in Arrowsic, Maine, plummeted to the mudflats and rocks below during an event for Maine Open Lighthouse Day.
The state’s annual holiday occurs each September when all of the lighthouses in Maine become open to the public for exploration and visitation.
Five visitors were rushed to the hospital while another six were treated for injuries on the scene, though none of the injuries were life-threatening.
Caution tape goes up over the walkway to Doubling Point Lighthouse (WGME via X)
“Just heard a terribly loud cracking, and then collapsing sound, and then some screams, and everyone knew immediately what had happened,” witness Alex Hill recalled to local outlet WGME.
Since the beach was at low tide during the time of the accident, some of the victims fell as much as 10 feet into the rocks below, according to Bath Fire Department Deputy Chief Chris Cummings.
Doubling Point Lighthouse is closed to the public until further notice, according to a notice posted on the lighthouse’s website.
Doubling Point was built in 1899 and still actively serves to help sailors navigate, flashing a white light every four seconds that goes out roughly nine nautical miles.
“Upon arrival, you will be astonished to see the radiant, masterfully constructed lighthouse tower and connected walkway strikingly juxtapose with the natural beauty of the mighty, deep-blue waters of the Kennebec River, peaceful golden marsh grass, and the tall, green pine trees,” the lighthouse’s website muses about the now-collapsed walkway.
Visiting the outside and surrounding area of the lighthouse is free for tourists, though they are only permitted inside the lighthouse during last Saturday’s holiday, which is sponsored by the American Lighthouse Foundation and the US Coast Guard.
The collapse of the walkway is currently under investigation.