Worst Engineering Disasters

Tuesday, Jul 5, 2022, 6:22 pm
By:Tony Williams

1.Cleveland East Ohio explosion

This explosion occurred in 1944 and it resulted in the death of 130 people and it completely destroyed everything within one square mile. The explosion was caused by gas tanks above ground exploding resulting in this complete destruction.

Cleveland East Ohio explosion-Worst Engineering Disasters

2.Boston Molasses

The death toll with this disaster was 21 people, but more than 150 were injured after a molasses tank ruptured. The result was 2.3 million US gallons flooding the area with such force that a train was lifted off the tracks and buildings were destroyed. Such a small thing managed to cause so much damage in a relatively short period of time.

Boston Molasses-Worst Engineering Disasters

3.DC-10 Disasters

In the 1970s, these planes ended up having to be grounded after there were a number of reported malfunctions including issues with doors. The final straw was when a flight crashed after it basically fell apart resulting in 273 people being killed.

DC-10 Disasters-Worst Engineering Disasters

4.Tacoma Washington bridge

This is a genuine photograph and the only surprise is that the sole casualty was a dog. This bridge was a mile long and strong winds showed how weak it actually was with the entire thing being caught on film resulting in us being able to watch this bridge collapse before our very eyes.

Tacoma Washington bridge-Worst Engineering Disasters

5.Banqiao Dam

When this dam in China failed in 1975 it led to an estimated 171,000 people being killed and more than 11 million people saw their homes being wiped out. A total of 62 dams in the area failed after a typhoon and it is hard to imagine the actual devastation that took place or how scared you would have been should you have lived in the area.

Banqiao Dam-Worst Engineering Disasters

6.Hyatt Regency walkway

This walkway in the hotel collapsed in 1981 and the result was that 114 people died and another 200 were injured. The numbers were so high due to a tea party that was going on at the time, but it could have been worse as more than 2000 were in the area.

Hyatt Regency walkway-Worst Engineering Disasters

7.Deepwater Horizon

This was an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico that went on fire and exploded. While we are not talking about a massive loss of human life here, although 11 did die, it was more to do with the pollution that caused a problem as so much wildlife died as a result.

Deepwater Horizon-Worst Engineering Disasters


What else can be said about Titanic that has not already been covered? Everybody knows the story, so it is clear as to why this appears on a list of the worst engineering disasters ever because when it comes to ships sinking this has to be one of the most spectacular.

Titanic-Worst Engineering Disasters

9.St Francis Dam

The guy responsible for building this dam ended his career after it failed resulting in 450 people dying and 12.5 billion US gallons of water flooding into the Santa Clarita valley near Los Angeles. Santa Paula also ended up being buried under mud and debris and it was a miracle more people did not die.

St Francis Dam-Worst Engineering Disasters

10.3 Mile Island

While this may not have been on the same scale as Chernobyl, it was really a case of an engineering disaster where they got lucky. This was actually a partial melt down, but toxic waste was released and over 100,000 people were evacuated.

3 Mile Island-Worst Engineering Disasters


Everybody is aware of this particular nuclear disaster which took place in 1986. This is the worst nuclear disaster in the history of mankind and the area around it still cannot be inhabited. People may not have directly died, but the radiation poisoning has caused untold damage.

Chernobyl-Worst Engineering Disasters

12.Bhopal disaster

This disaster was massive and it was all due to a gas leak that occurred in 1984. More than 16,000 people died and over 550,000 were injured thanks to them being exposed to a toxic gas that was released into the atmosphere. This is undoubtedly one of the worst engineering disasters ever.

Bhopal disaster-Worst Engineering Disasters



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