The original Tacoma Narrows Bridge stretched 1,810 m (5,940 ft) across a narrow channel of Puget Sound near Tacoma, Washington. After two years of construction, the bridge opened to traffic on July 1, 1940. Four months later the bridge collapsed during a windstorm with gusts that reached 68 km/h (42 mph). The catastrophe was attributed to faulty design. Instead of allowing the wind to pass through, the suspended girders caught the wind, causing the bridge to buck and roll. The bucking motion earned the bridge the nickname Galloping Gertie. The stronger the wind blew, the more violently the structure oscillated, until it finally broke apart and crashed into the water. In 1992 the bridge’s sunken remains were placed on the United States National Register of Historic Places.
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