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Interstate 5 bridge collapses north of Seattle

MOUNT VERNON, Wash. (AP) — An Interstate 5 bridge over a river collapsed north of Seattle Thursday evening, dumping two vehicles into the water and sparking a rescue effort by boats and divers as three injured people were pulled from the chilly waterway.

Authorities said it appeared nobody was killed in the bridge failure that raised the question about the safety of aging spans and cut off the main route between Seattle and Canada.

"We don't think anyone else went into the water," said Marcus Deyerin, a spokesman for the Northwest Washington Incident Management Team. "At this point we're optimistic."

A man and a woman were reported in stable condition with non-life-threatening injuries in the emergency room at Skagit Valley Hospital, hospital spokeswoman Kari Ranten said. Another man was reported in stable condition at United General Hospital in Sedro-Woolley, hospital CEO Greg Reed said. He said he didn't know whether the man would be admitted.

Survivor Dan Sligh and his wife were driving their pickup truck when he said the bridge disappeared before them in a "big puff of dust."

"I hit the brakes and we went off the bridge," Sligh told reporters from Skagit Valley Hospital, adding he "saw the water approaching ... you hold on as tight as you can."

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