No one seemed to notice when a large white crane that had been working at the doomed Florida International University bridge lurched away down Tamiami Trail shortly after the span collapsed. There was a disaster to respond to: Mountains of concrete. Horribly mangled cars. Dead and injured people.
It wasn't until some time later that authorities began wondering what happened to the crane and its operator, a close eyewitness who might help the investigation into the collapse. But he, and the crane, were gone.
"He drove away in the crane and nobody stopped him," said Carl Robertson, 73, a homeless man who lives near the site of the bridge. Robertson was right there and saw it fall down. He was the first person to call 911, using his aging cell phone.
Read more from our news partner, The Miami Herald.