What started out as a typical day on the water took a very dramatic turn for young sailing instructors at the Bay-Waveland Yacht Club Sailing Camp. Gabby Krotser was sailing about 100 yards from the bridge when she saw the concrete column with the scaffolding holding nine construction workers fall.
"We kind of stayed close, because we wanted to see what was going on. But, we had to get kind of far away because barges were moving. When it went down, it didn't go down very fast. It went down slow, but we felt it once it hit the water," says sailing instructor Krotser.
"When we got over there, I was clueless. I was like, 'What's going on? What's going on?' And you kind of felt this little wave. I'm looking around and Gabby's like, 'It fell. It fell,'" says sailing instructor Brian Carson.
This was also the first day the instructors' camping students, some as young as six, tested their sailing skills on the water.
"It was kind of chaotic for a little while. You had the little ones wondering what was going on, freaking out and you wanted to kind of panic. But, you had the little ones so you were like, 'Wait, if I panic, they're going to panic,'" say Carson.
Soon some 10 to 15 rescue boats, 16 divers and crews from a multitude of agencies along the coast were on site. Although, they pulled eight workers from the water, one construction worker remains to be found.
"It's most likely... this person is pinned under some of this debris underwater," says Chief Chataginer with the Department of Marine Resource and Patrol.
But Chataginer says, despite the fact their rescue mission is now one of recovery, he and others will not stop until the missing construction worker is found.
"We will pretty much stay with it until we have a recovery... as long as we can maintain the manpower to do it and use our resources."
Recovery crews suspended their search for the missing construction worker overnight, but resumed Friday morning at 8am.
Have photos of the bridge accident? Click here to email them to WLOX News.