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5 Main Parts of an Essay: An Easy Guide to a Solid Structure

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You might think of essays as boring assignments for explaining the themes in Huckleberry Finn or breaking down the characters in The Great Gatsby , but the essay is one of the most timeless forms in all of literature. It’s a genre that includes deep readings of texts, personal essays, and journalistic reports. Before you get to any of that, you need to figure out the basic parts of the essay.

What Are the Parts of an Essay?

You can think of any essay as consisting of three parts: the introduction, the body, and the conclusion. You might see some small variations, but for the most part, that is the structure of any essay.

Take the five-paragraph essay as a simple example. With that form, you get one introductory paragraph, three body paragraphs, and a concluding paragraph. That’s five paragraphs, but three parts.

5 main parts of an essay with tips for writing them from the article

What Are the Main Parts of an Essay Printable 2022

Like a good word burger: how to write the three parts of an essay.

A good essay is much like a good burger (or a sandwich, but we’re a burger society here). Your intro and conclusion are the buns sandwiching the patty, cheese, and other good toppings of the body paragraphs.

What Is an Introduction Paragraph?

“Hello! My name is Seymour. It’s nice to meet you.” That might seem like a simple, non-essay introduction, but it has all the basic components of what you want in an  introduction paragraph . You start with the hook. Your hook is the first sentence of your entire essay, so you want to grab people’s attention (or hook them) immediately.

From there, you have sentences that lead the reader directly to the thesis sentence . Your thesis is possibly the most important part of your entire essay. It’s the entire raison d'être . It’s what you’re arguing or trying to accomplish with your essay as a whole.

Kaboom! That, the sound of the entire universe forming in an instant, giving rise to apples, toenails, and what we know today as the humble five-paragraph essay. Since that fortuitous moment, the five-paragraph essay has become the favorite assignment among English teachers, to the bemusement of students. Although many educators, professionals, and youths have valid criticisms about the form, the five-paragraph essay is an important component of developing writing skills and critical thought. 

What Is a Body Paragraph?

The body paragraphs are the main part of your essay burger. Each body paragraph presents an idea that supports your thesis. This can include evidence from a literary source, details that build out your thesis, or explanations for your reasoning.

The first sentence of each body paragraph is known as the topic sentence . You can kind of think of it like a smaller part of your thesis sentence. It’s the main idea that you want to discuss in that specific body paragraph. The rest of the body paragraph is made up of supporting sentences, which support that topic sentence.

While many are critical of the five-paragraph essay’s rigid form, that rigidity is part of what makes it so advantageous. Every five-paragraph essay is an introductory paragraph, three body paragraphs, and a conclusion paragraph, and they will always have that structure. With such a stable form, a writer truly only needs to worry about the contents of the essay, putting all the focus on the actual writing and ideas, not the organization.

What Is a Concluding Paragraph?

A burger needs a solid, sturdy bottom bun. Otherwise, the burger would fall apart. The same holds for a conclusion. A good conclusion holds the essay together, while offering a unique finishing touch to the whole thing.

The conclusion is at once the easiest and hardest part of the essay. It’s easy in that it mostly involves restating your thesis and much of what you already discussed. The hard part is thinking outside of the essay and considering how your thesis applies to components of real life.

In conclusion, the five-paragraph essay is a useful and effective form for teaching students how to write and develop their critical thinking skills. It’s not without its setbacks, but it’s a simple form that can give way to other ways of writing. Longer research papers are essentially five-paragraph essays with more body paragraphs, while short fiction and creative writing require similar critical thought and writing acumen. Even if you don’t write, five-paragraph essays can teach you how to use your voice and express your ideas.

Explore Essay Examples

Understanding each part of an essay is essential to writing one, but seeing actual essay examples in the wild can take you from essay noob to essay expert. Look at specific types of essays, and see if you can pick out the different parts in each one — from thesis statements to hooks and concluding sentences. 

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  • Example of a great essay | Explanations, tips & tricks

Example of a Great Essay | Explanations, Tips & Tricks

Published on February 9, 2015 by Shane Bryson . Revised on July 23, 2023 by Shona McCombes.

This example guides you through the structure of an essay. It shows how to build an effective introduction , focused paragraphs , clear transitions between ideas, and a strong conclusion .

Each paragraph addresses a single central point, introduced by a topic sentence , and each point is directly related to the thesis statement .

As you read, hover over the highlighted parts to learn what they do and why they work.

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Other interesting articles, frequently asked questions about writing an essay, an appeal to the senses: the development of the braille system in nineteenth-century france.

The invention of Braille was a major turning point in the history of disability. The writing system of raised dots used by visually impaired people was developed by Louis Braille in nineteenth-century France. In a society that did not value disabled people in general, blindness was particularly stigmatized, and lack of access to reading and writing was a significant barrier to social participation. The idea of tactile reading was not entirely new, but existing methods based on sighted systems were difficult to learn and use. As the first writing system designed for blind people’s needs, Braille was a groundbreaking new accessibility tool. It not only provided practical benefits, but also helped change the cultural status of blindness. This essay begins by discussing the situation of blind people in nineteenth-century Europe. It then describes the invention of Braille and the gradual process of its acceptance within blind education. Subsequently, it explores the wide-ranging effects of this invention on blind people’s social and cultural lives.

Lack of access to reading and writing put blind people at a serious disadvantage in nineteenth-century society. Text was one of the primary methods through which people engaged with culture, communicated with others, and accessed information; without a well-developed reading system that did not rely on sight, blind people were excluded from social participation (Weygand, 2009). While disabled people in general suffered from discrimination, blindness was widely viewed as the worst disability, and it was commonly believed that blind people were incapable of pursuing a profession or improving themselves through culture (Weygand, 2009). This demonstrates the importance of reading and writing to social status at the time: without access to text, it was considered impossible to fully participate in society. Blind people were excluded from the sighted world, but also entirely dependent on sighted people for information and education.

In France, debates about how to deal with disability led to the adoption of different strategies over time. While people with temporary difficulties were able to access public welfare, the most common response to people with long-term disabilities, such as hearing or vision loss, was to group them together in institutions (Tombs, 1996). At first, a joint institute for the blind and deaf was created, and although the partnership was motivated more by financial considerations than by the well-being of the residents, the institute aimed to help people develop skills valuable to society (Weygand, 2009). Eventually blind institutions were separated from deaf institutions, and the focus shifted towards education of the blind, as was the case for the Royal Institute for Blind Youth, which Louis Braille attended (Jimenez et al, 2009). The growing acknowledgement of the uniqueness of different disabilities led to more targeted education strategies, fostering an environment in which the benefits of a specifically blind education could be more widely recognized.

Several different systems of tactile reading can be seen as forerunners to the method Louis Braille developed, but these systems were all developed based on the sighted system. The Royal Institute for Blind Youth in Paris taught the students to read embossed roman letters, a method created by the school’s founder, Valentin Hauy (Jimenez et al., 2009). Reading this way proved to be a rather arduous task, as the letters were difficult to distinguish by touch. The embossed letter method was based on the reading system of sighted people, with minimal adaptation for those with vision loss. As a result, this method did not gain significant success among blind students.

Louis Braille was bound to be influenced by his school’s founder, but the most influential pre-Braille tactile reading system was Charles Barbier’s night writing. A soldier in Napoleon’s army, Barbier developed a system in 1819 that used 12 dots with a five line musical staff (Kersten, 1997). His intention was to develop a system that would allow the military to communicate at night without the need for light (Herron, 2009). The code developed by Barbier was phonetic (Jimenez et al., 2009); in other words, the code was designed for sighted people and was based on the sounds of words, not on an actual alphabet. Barbier discovered that variants of raised dots within a square were the easiest method of reading by touch (Jimenez et al., 2009). This system proved effective for the transmission of short messages between military personnel, but the symbols were too large for the fingertip, greatly reducing the speed at which a message could be read (Herron, 2009). For this reason, it was unsuitable for daily use and was not widely adopted in the blind community.

Nevertheless, Barbier’s military dot system was more efficient than Hauy’s embossed letters, and it provided the framework within which Louis Braille developed his method. Barbier’s system, with its dashes and dots, could form over 4000 combinations (Jimenez et al., 2009). Compared to the 26 letters of the Latin alphabet, this was an absurdly high number. Braille kept the raised dot form, but developed a more manageable system that would reflect the sighted alphabet. He replaced Barbier’s dashes and dots with just six dots in a rectangular configuration (Jimenez et al., 2009). The result was that the blind population in France had a tactile reading system using dots (like Barbier’s) that was based on the structure of the sighted alphabet (like Hauy’s); crucially, this system was the first developed specifically for the purposes of the blind.

While the Braille system gained immediate popularity with the blind students at the Institute in Paris, it had to gain acceptance among the sighted before its adoption throughout France. This support was necessary because sighted teachers and leaders had ultimate control over the propagation of Braille resources. Many of the teachers at the Royal Institute for Blind Youth resisted learning Braille’s system because they found the tactile method of reading difficult to learn (Bullock & Galst, 2009). This resistance was symptomatic of the prevalent attitude that the blind population had to adapt to the sighted world rather than develop their own tools and methods. Over time, however, with the increasing impetus to make social contribution possible for all, teachers began to appreciate the usefulness of Braille’s system (Bullock & Galst, 2009), realizing that access to reading could help improve the productivity and integration of people with vision loss. It took approximately 30 years, but the French government eventually approved the Braille system, and it was established throughout the country (Bullock & Galst, 2009).

Although Blind people remained marginalized throughout the nineteenth century, the Braille system granted them growing opportunities for social participation. Most obviously, Braille allowed people with vision loss to read the same alphabet used by sighted people (Bullock & Galst, 2009), allowing them to participate in certain cultural experiences previously unavailable to them. Written works, such as books and poetry, had previously been inaccessible to the blind population without the aid of a reader, limiting their autonomy. As books began to be distributed in Braille, this barrier was reduced, enabling people with vision loss to access information autonomously. The closing of the gap between the abilities of blind and the sighted contributed to a gradual shift in blind people’s status, lessening the cultural perception of the blind as essentially different and facilitating greater social integration.

The Braille system also had important cultural effects beyond the sphere of written culture. Its invention later led to the development of a music notation system for the blind, although Louis Braille did not develop this system himself (Jimenez, et al., 2009). This development helped remove a cultural obstacle that had been introduced by the popularization of written musical notation in the early 1500s. While music had previously been an arena in which the blind could participate on equal footing, the transition from memory-based performance to notation-based performance meant that blind musicians were no longer able to compete with sighted musicians (Kersten, 1997). As a result, a tactile musical notation system became necessary for professional equality between blind and sighted musicians (Kersten, 1997).

Braille paved the way for dramatic cultural changes in the way blind people were treated and the opportunities available to them. Louis Braille’s innovation was to reimagine existing reading systems from a blind perspective, and the success of this invention required sighted teachers to adapt to their students’ reality instead of the other way around. In this sense, Braille helped drive broader social changes in the status of blindness. New accessibility tools provide practical advantages to those who need them, but they can also change the perspectives and attitudes of those who do not.

Bullock, J. D., & Galst, J. M. (2009). The Story of Louis Braille. Archives of Ophthalmology , 127(11), 1532. https://​doi.org/10.1001/​archophthalmol.2009.286.

Herron, M. (2009, May 6). Blind visionary. Retrieved from https://​eandt.theiet.org/​content/​articles/2009/05/​blind-visionary/.

Jiménez, J., Olea, J., Torres, J., Alonso, I., Harder, D., & Fischer, K. (2009). Biography of Louis Braille and Invention of the Braille Alphabet. Survey of Ophthalmology , 54(1), 142–149. https://​doi.org/10.1016/​j.survophthal.2008.10.006.

Kersten, F.G. (1997). The history and development of Braille music methodology. The Bulletin of Historical Research in Music Education , 18(2). Retrieved from https://​www.jstor.org/​stable/40214926.

Mellor, C.M. (2006). Louis Braille: A touch of genius . Boston: National Braille Press.

Tombs, R. (1996). France: 1814-1914 . London: Pearson Education Ltd.

Weygand, Z. (2009). The blind in French society from the Middle Ages to the century of Louis Braille . Stanford: Stanford University Press.

If you want to know more about AI tools , college essays , or fallacies make sure to check out some of our other articles with explanations and examples or go directly to our tools!

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An essay is a focused piece of writing that explains, argues, describes, or narrates.

In high school, you may have to write many different types of essays to develop your writing skills.

Academic essays at college level are usually argumentative : you develop a clear thesis about your topic and make a case for your position using evidence, analysis and interpretation.

The structure of an essay is divided into an introduction that presents your topic and thesis statement , a body containing your in-depth analysis and arguments, and a conclusion wrapping up your ideas.

The structure of the body is flexible, but you should always spend some time thinking about how you can organize your essay to best serve your ideas.

Your essay introduction should include three main things, in this order:

  • An opening hook to catch the reader’s attention.
  • Relevant background information that the reader needs to know.
  • A thesis statement that presents your main point or argument.

The length of each part depends on the length and complexity of your essay .

A thesis statement is a sentence that sums up the central point of your paper or essay . Everything else you write should relate to this key idea.

A topic sentence is a sentence that expresses the main point of a paragraph . Everything else in the paragraph should relate to the topic sentence.

At college level, you must properly cite your sources in all essays , research papers , and other academic texts (except exams and in-class exercises).

Add a citation whenever you quote , paraphrase , or summarize information or ideas from a source. You should also give full source details in a bibliography or reference list at the end of your text.

The exact format of your citations depends on which citation style you are instructed to use. The most common styles are APA , MLA , and Chicago .

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Bryson, S. (2023, July 23). Example of a Great Essay | Explanations, Tips & Tricks. Scribbr. Retrieved March 30, 2024, from https://www.scribbr.com/academic-essay/example-essay-structure/

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Basic essay structure

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Organise your essays to demonstrate your knowledge, show your research and support your arguments

Essays are usually written in continuous, flowing, paragraphed text and don’t use section headings. This may seem unstructured at first, but good essays are carefully structured.

How your assignment content is structured is your choice. Use the basic pattern below to get started.

Essay structure

An essay consists of three basic parts:, introduction.

The essay itself usually has no section headings. Only the title page, author declaration and reference list are written as headings, along with, for example, appendices. Check any task instructions, and your course or unit handbook, for further details.

Content in assignment introductions can vary widely. In some disciplines you may need to provide a full background and context, whereas other essays may need only a little context, and others may need none.

An introduction to an essay usually has three primary purposes:

  • To set the scene
  • To tell readers what is important, and why
  • To tell the reader what the essay is going to do (signposting)

A standard introduction includes the following five elements:

  • A statement that sets out the topic and engages the reader.
  • The background and context of the topic.
  • Any important definitions, integrated into your text as appropriate.
  • An outline of the key points, topic, issues, evidence, ideas, arguments, models, theories, or other information, as appropriate. This may include distinctions or contrasts between different ideas or evidence.
  • A final sentence or two which tells the reader your focal points and aims.

You should aim to restrict your introduction to information needed for the topic and only include background and contextual information which helps the reader understand it, or sets the scene for your chosen focal points.

In most essays you will have a considerable range of options for your focus. You will be expected to demonstrate your ability to select the most relevant content to address your focal points.

There are some exceptions. For example, if an assignment brief specifically directs the essay focus or requires you to write broadly about a topic. These are relatively rare or are discipline-specific so you should check your task instructions and discipline and subject area conventions.

Below are examples of an opening statement, a summary of the selected content, and a statement at the end of the introduction which tells the reader what the essay will focus on and how it will be addressed. We've use a fictional essay.

The title of our essay is: 'Cats are better than dogs. Discuss.'

To submit this essay you also would need to add citations as appropriate.

Example of opening statements:

People have shared their lives with cats and dogs for millenia. Which is better depends partly on each animal’s characteristics and partly on the owner’s preferences.

Here is a summary of five specific topics selected for the essay, which would be covered in a little more detail in the introduction:

  • In ancient Egypt, cats were treated as sacred and were pampered companions.
  • Dogs have for centuries been used for hunting and to guard property. There are many types of working dog, and both dogs and cats are now kept purely as pets.
  • They are very different animals, with different care needs, traits and abilities.
  • It is a common perception that people are either “cat-lovers” or “dog-lovers”.
  • It is a common perception that people tend to have preferences for one, and negative beliefs about and attitudes towards, the other.

Example of closing statements at the end of the introduction:

This essay will examine both cats’ and dogs’ behaviour and abilities, the benefits of keeping them as pets, and whether people’s perceptions of their nature matches current knowledge and understanding.

Main body: paragraphs

The body of the essay should be organised into paragraphs. Each paragraph should deal with a different aspect of the issue, but they should also link in some way to those that precede and follow it. This is not an easy thing to get right, even for experienced writers, partly because there are many ways to successfully structure and use paragraphs. There is no perfect paragraph template.

The theme or topic statement

The first sentence, or sometimes two, tells the reader what the paragraph is going to cover. It may either:

  • Begin a new point or topic, or
  • Follow on from the previous paragraph, but with a different focus or go into more-specific detail. If this is the case, it should clearly link to the previous paragraph.

The last sentence

It should be clear if the point has come to an end, or if it continues in the next paragraph.

Here is a brief example of flow between two summarised paragraphs which cover the historical perspective:

It is known from hieroglyphs that the Ancient Egyptians believed that cats were sacred. They were also held in high regard, as suggested by their being found mummified and entombed with their owners (Smith, 1969). In addition, cats are portrayed aiding hunters. Therefore, they were both treated as sacred, and were used as intelligent working companions. However, today they are almost entirely owned as pets.

In contrast, dogs have not been regarded as sacred, but they have for centuries been widely used for hunting in Europe. This developed over time and eventually they became domesticated and accepted as pets. Today, they are seen as loyal, loving and protective members of the family, and are widely used as working dogs.

There is never any new information in a conclusion.

The conclusion usually does three things:

  • Reminds your readers of what the essay was meant to do.
  • Provides an answer, where possible, to the title.
  • Reminds your reader how you reached that answer.

The conclusion should usually occupy just one paragraph. It draws together all the key elements of your essay, so you do not need to repeat the fine detail unless you are highlighting something.

A conclusion to our essay about cats and dogs is given below:

Both cats and dogs have been highly-valued for millenia, are affectionate and beneficial to their owners’ wellbeing. However, they are very different animals and each is 'better' than the other regarding care needs and natural traits. Dogs need regular training and exercise but many owners do not train or exercise them enough, resulting in bad behaviour. They also need to be 'boarded' if the owner is away and to have frequent baths to prevent bad odours. In contrast, cats do not need this level of effort and care. Dogs are seen as more intelligent, loyal and attuned to human beings, whereas cats are perceived as aloof and solitary, and as only seeking affection when they want to be fed. However, recent studies have shown that cats are affectionate and loyal and more intelligent than dogs, but it is less obvious and useful. There are, for example, no 'police' or 'assistance' cats, in part because they do not have the kinds of natural instincts which make dogs easy to train. Therefore, which animal is better depends upon personal preference and whether they are required to work. Therefore, although dogs are better as working animals, cats are easier, better pets.

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  • Introduction
  • Each is made up of one or several paragraphs.
  • The purpose of this section is to introduce the topic and why it matters, identify the specific focus of the paper, and indicate how the paper will be organized.
  • To keep from being too broad or vague, try to incorporate a keyword from your title in the first sentence.
  • For example, you might tell readers that the issue is part of an important debate or provide a statistic explaining how many people are affected.  
  • Defining your terms is particularly important if there are several possible meanings or interpretations of the term.
  • Try to frame this as a statement of your focus. This is also known as a purpose statement, thesis argument, or hypothesis.
  • The purpose of this section is to provide information and arguments that follow logically from the main point you identified in your introduction. 
  • Identify the main ideas that support and develop your paper’s main point.
  • For longer essays, you may be required to use subheadings to label your sections.
  • Point: Provide a topic sentence that identifies the topic of the paragraph.
  • Proof: Give evidence or examples that develop and explain the topic (e.g., these may come from your sources).
  • Significance: Conclude the paragraph with sentence that tells the reader how your paragraph supports the main point of your essay.
  • The purpose of this section is to summarize the main points of the essay and identify the broader significance of the topic or issue.
  • Remind the reader of the main point of your essay (without restating it word-for-word).
  • Summarize the key ideas that supported your main point. (Note: No new information or evidence should be introduced in the conclusion.) 
  • Suggest next steps, future research, or recommendations.
  • Answer the question “Why should readers care?” (implications, significance).
  • Find out what style guide you are required to follow (e.g., APA, MLA, Chicago) and follow the guidelines to create a reference list (may be called a bibliography or works cited).
  • Be sure to include citations in the text when you refer to sources within your essay.
  • Cite Your Sources - University of Guelph
  • Read assignment instructions carefully and refer to them throughout the writing process.
  • e.g., describe, evaluate, analyze, explain, argue, trace, outline, synthesize, compare, contrast, critique.
  • For longer essays, you may find it helpful to work on a section at a time, approaching each section as a “mini-essay.”
  • Make sure every paragraph, example, and sentence directly supports your main point.
  • Aim for 5-8 sentences or ¾ page.
  • Visit your instructor or TA during office hours to talk about your approach to the assignment.
  • Leave yourself time to revise your essay before submitting.
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Essays consisting of an introduction, a main body (which may be divided into sections), and a   conclusion   are referred to as three-part essays. You may be used to this essay format from school.

In the introduction, the reader is introduced to the topic that will be discussed and to the argument that will be presented. After the introduction comes the main part of the text, where the analysis and discussion are carried out and results are presented. Depending on the length of the essay, this body section may or may not be divided into different sections, and the division may be thematic, chronological, or based on comparison and contrast, for instance. In the final part of the essay, the argument will be summed up and conclusions will be drawn from what has been discussed in the body.

Structure of the three-part essay

Each section of the text needs to be structured in a way that helps the reader understand the argument and the points that the writer wishes to make.

The main purpose of the introduction is to provide the reader with a clear idea of the focus and aim of the text. The topic of the essay/article is presented in the introduction, often accompanied by a thesis statement (the claim that the writer wishes to make). Depending on the type of essay, the introduction section also

  • provides the context/background of the argument
  • introduces the theoretical perspectives, terminology, etc. that will be used
  • explains how the writing will be organised

All the information in the introduction must be relevant to the points that are subsequently made in the body of the text. The introduction often starts with a broad, or general, description of the topic and then gradually narrows down to the specific focus of the essay. Read more about the structure of introductions, and learn about the CARS (Creating a Research Space) model here:

After the introduction comes the main part of the text, which is often referred to as the body. This is where the analysis and discussion will be carried out and where results are presented. Everything that is brought up in this part of the text relates back to what was presented in the introduction. Depending on discipline, aim and context, there are various ways of structuring the body of the text. A basic strategy is to deal with one thing at a time and to order the different issues that are brought up in a logical sequence that makes the argument easy to follow.

Depending on the length of the essay, the body may or may not be divided into different sections. Note that there is never a heading called "Body" in essays; this word is only used when talking about the essay format to signal that it is the bulk of the essay text.

In the final part of the essay, the argument is summed up and conclusions are drawn from what has been discussed. Generally, a conclusion should not contain any new facts or ideas, but instead provide a brief restatement of the main arguments that have been presented in the essay.

The conclusion might refer back to the introduction and comment on the thesis statement or the research questions presented there. In some texts, it is appropriate to include a look forward, in the form of suggestions for further study, for instance.

You can watch this video for more information about the three-part essay structure:

Instructional video from the free online MOOC "Writing in English at University" which was developed at Lund University in 2016.

Further help on writing a three-part essay

For further information and advice about different parts of the essay, see:

  • Structure of Introductions

Elements of an Essay

Definition of elements of an essay.

An essay is a piece of composition that discusses a thing, a person, a problem, or an issue in a way that the writer demonstrates his knowledge by offering a new perspective , a new opinion, a solution, or new suggestions or recommendations. An essay is not just a haphazard piece of writing. It is a well-organized composition comprising several elements that work to build an argument , describe a situation, narrate an event, or state a problem with a solution. There are several types of essays based on the purpose and the target audience . Structurally, as an essay is an organized composition, it has the following elements:

  • Introduction
  • Body Paragraphs

Nature of Elements of an Essay

An essay has three basic elements as given above. Each of these elements plays its respective role to persuade the audience, convince the readers, and convey the meanings an author intends to convey. For example, an introduction is intended to introduce the topic of the essay. First it hooks the readers through the ‘ hook ,’ which is an anecdote , a good quote, a verse , or an event relevant to the topic. It intends to attract the attention of readers.

Following the hood, the author gives background information about the topic, which is intended to educate readers about the topic. The final element of the introduction is a thesis statement. This is a concise and compact sentence or two, which introduces evidence to be discussed in the body paragraphs.

Body paragraphs of an essay discuss the evidences and arguments introduced in the thesis statement . If a thesis statement has presented three evidences or arguments about the topic, there will be three body paragraphs. However, if there are more arguments or evidences, there could be more paragraphs.

The structure of each body paragraph is the same. It starts with a topic sentence, followed by further explanation, examples, evidences, and supporting details. If it is a simple non-research essay, then there are mostly examples of what is introduced in the topic sentences. However, if the essay is research-based, there will be supporting details such as statistics, quotes, charts, and explanations.

The conclusion is the last part of an essay. It is also the crucial part that sums up the argument, or concludes the description, narration, or event. It is comprised of three major parts. The first part is a rephrasing of the thesis statement given at the end of the introduction. It reminds the readers what they have read about. The second part is the summary of the major points discussed in the body paragraphs, and the third part is closing remarks, which are suggestions, recommendations, a call to action, or the author’s own opinion of the issue.

Function of Elements of an Essay

Each element of an essay has a specific function. An introduction not only introduces the topic, but also gives background information, in addition to hooking the readers to read the whole essay. Its first sentence, which is also called a hook, literally hooks readers. When readers have gone through the introduction, it is supposed that they have full information about what they are going to read.

In the same way, the function of body paragraphs is to give more information and convince the readers about the topic. It could be persuasion , explanation, or clarification as required. Mostly, writers use ethos , pathos , and logos in this part of an essay. As traditionally, it has three body paragraphs, writers use each of the rhetorical devices in each paragraph, but it is not a hard and fast rule. The number of body paragraphs could be increased, according to the demand of the topic, or demand of the course.

As far as the conclusion is concerned, its major function is to sum up the argument, issue, or explanation. It makes readers feel that now they are going to finish their reading. It provides them sufficient information about the topic. It gives them a new perspective, a new sight, a new vision, or motivates them to take action. The  conclusion needs to also satisfy readers that they have read something about some topic, have got something to tell others, and that they have not merely read it for the sake of reading.

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Academic Writing

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Writing an Essay

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Basic academic essays have three main parts:

  • introduction

give three main parts of an essay

  • Video Explanation

Writing an Introduction

  • Section  One  is a neutral sentence that will engage the reader’s interest in your essay.
  • Section  Two  picks up the topic you are writing about by identifying the issues that you are going to explore.
  • Section  Three  is an indication of how the question will be answered. Give a brief outline of how you will deal with each issue, and in which order.

An introduction   generally does three things. The first section is usually a  general comment  that shows the reader why the topic is important, gets their interest, and leads them into the topic. It isn’t actually part of your argument. The next section of the introduction is the  thesis statement . This is your response to the question; your final answer. It is probably the most important part of the introduction. Finally, the last section of an introduction tells the reader what they can expect in the essay body. This is where you  briefly outline your arguments .

Here is an example of the introduction to the question - Discuss how media can influence children. Use specific examples to support your view.

Example of an introduction

Writing Body Paragraphs

  • The topic sentence  introduces  the topic of your paragraph.
  • The sentences that follow the topic sentence will  develop and support the central idea  of your topic.
  • The concluding sentence of your paragraph  restates the idea  expressed in the topic sentence.

The essay body itself is organized into paragraphs, according to your plan. Remember that each paragraph focuses on one idea, or aspect of your topic, and should contain at least 4-5 sentences so you can deal with that idea properly.

Each body paragraph has three sections. First is the  topic sentence . This lets the reader know what the paragraph is going to be about and  the main point it will make. It gives the paragraph’s point straight away. Next, come the  supporting sentences , which expand on the central idea, explaining it in more detail, exploring what it means, and of course giving the evidence and argument that back it up. This is where you use your research to support your argument. Then there is a  concluding sentence . This restates the idea in the topic sentence, to remind the reader of your main point. It also shows how that point helps answer the question.

Body paragraph example

Writing a Conclusion

  • Re-read your introduction – this information will need to be restated in your conclusion emphasizing what you have proven and how you have proven it.
  • Begin by  summarizing  your main arguments and restating your thesis ; e.g. "This essay has considered….."
  • State your general conclusions,  explaining  why these are important.
  • The final sentences should  draw together  the evidence you have presented in the body of the essay to restate your conclusion in an interesting way (use a transitional word to get you started e.g. Overall, Therefore).

The last section of an academic essay is the conclusion. The conclusion should reaffirm your answer to the question, and briefly summarize key arguments. It does not include any new points or new information.

A conclusion has three sections. First,  repeat the thesis statement . It won’t use the exact same words as in your introduction, but it will repeat the point: your overall answer to the question based on your arguments. Then set out your  general conclusions , and a short explanation of why they are important.  Finally,  draw together the question, the evidence in the essay body, and the conclusion. This way the reader knows that you have understood and answered the question. This part needs to be clear and concise.

Conclusion example

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Phenomenal English

Solution destination to your problems, different parts of an essay.

There are five main parts of an essay. Every essay has three basic parts introduction (the beginning) , body (the middle) and the conclusion along with outlines (optional) and paragraphs (mandatory and sub part of body) . To craft out a good essay one must keep in mind this basic structure. Sometimes in our classes at graduation level a fourth part of essay called outlines is also included on the top of these three basic elements which serves as a road map for writing this essay. Three or more than three paragraphs in the body are also a necessary fifth element of essay.

The introduction

To arrest the immediate attention of readers before they get exhausted writer should present a hook (a sentence might be a surpring question or fact or a bold statement to hook attention of reader) and then put his basic theme or thesis along with background knowledge on which he is going to write essay in first two or three lines. Introduction must be pithy and concise stating complete information about the theme. However for unfolding the theme of the essay there are two approaches i.e for literary essays and student essays. Literary essayist has the choice to treat his theme as he likes. He can start his essay with an epigram, a quotation, a verse, a phrase or story as his main objective is to catch reader's attention. On the other hand for the students it is mandatory to adhere traditional rules of essay writing. They are not to catch examiners' attention.

The middle or Body

Body is one of the most important parts of an essay which consists of paragraphs. Adequate knowledge or information about the theme is necessary to form an argument where a single paragraph presents a single argument. The wider and deeper information will be better to formulate paragraph. Reproduction (repeating the same facts in different words time and again) of thoughts and facts badly affect the health of paragraph. To keep oneself enriched with the uptodate knowledge, one should fly to the reading, as it is a key to the knowledge. Three or more than three paragraphs are necessary for body of an essay. Less than three paragraphs in body would impact the length. With one or two paragraphs essay will not descend upon its definition perfectly. After stating topic sentence in first two lines paragraph can be developed further by giving facts, examples, by narrating incidents, logical reasoning and by drawing comparisons.

A paragraph consists of a topic sentence (indicates the thesis), its supporting details and some valuable information about the theme of essay. After stating topic sentence in first two lines, paragraph can be developed further by giving facts, examples, logical reasoning, by narrating incidents, or by drawing comparisons. A paragraph with solid arguments, facts and figures will satisfy the readers or examiner and rank your essay in their eyes. In other words success or failure of an essay depends on compactness of paragraphs you developed in essay.

The conclusion

Conclusion or final part of the essay requires more attention than all the other parts and it must be constructed in such a way it must leave a lasting impression on the readers. Thesis, topic sentences and all the arguments from body or paragraphs get combined in conclusion. Conclusion cannot accede more than a paragraph, it should and must reflect thesis of the essay as a poor conclusion can spoil whole essay.

Outlines are roadmap for both readers and writer, for readers they provide whole essay at a glance and writer determines his path and order in which he is going to write his essay. Outlines are most important sub-topics going to be discussed throughout the whole essay. No outlines for literary essays are required at all and for college essays they are optional. Outlines are least important part of an essay without them essays are acceptable.

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Traditional Academic Essays In Three Parts

Part i: the introduction.

An introduction is usually the first paragraph of your academic essay. If you’re writing a long essay, you might need 2 or 3 paragraphs to introduce your topic to your reader. A good introduction does 2 things:

  • Gets the reader’s attention. You can get a reader’s attention by telling a story, providing a statistic, pointing out something strange or interesting, providing and discussing an interesting quote, etc. Be interesting and find some original angle via which to engage others in your topic.
  • Provides a specific and debatable thesis statement. The thesis statement is usually just one sentence long, but it might be longer—even a whole paragraph—if the essay you’re writing is long. A good thesis statement makes a debatable point, meaning a point someone might disagree with and argue against. It also serves as a roadmap for what you argue in your paper.

Part II: The Body Paragraphs

Body paragraphs help you prove your thesis and move you along a compelling trajectory from your introduction to your conclusion. If your thesis is a simple one, you might not need a lot of body paragraphs to prove it. If it’s more complicated, you’ll need more body paragraphs. An easy way to remember the parts of a body paragraph is to think of them as the MEAT of your essay:

Main Idea. The part of a topic sentence that states the main idea of the body paragraph. All of the sentences in the paragraph connect to it. Keep in mind that main ideas are…

  • like labels. They appear in the first sentence of the paragraph and tell your reader what’s inside the paragraph.
  • arguable. They’re not statements of fact; they’re debatable points that you prove with evidence.
  • focused. Make a specific point in each paragraph and then prove that point.

Evidence. The parts of a paragraph that prove the main idea. You might include different types of evidence in different sentences. Keep in mind that different disciplines have different ideas about what counts as evidence and they adhere to different citation styles. Examples of evidence include…

  • quotations and/or paraphrases from sources.
  • facts , e.g. statistics or findings from studies you’ve conducted.
  • narratives and/or descriptions , e.g. of your own experiences.

Analysis. The parts of a paragraph that explain the evidence. Make sure you tie the evidence you provide back to the paragraph’s main idea. In other words, discuss the evidence.

Transition. The part of a paragraph that helps you move fluidly from the last paragraph. Transitions appear in topic sentences along with main ideas, and they look both backward and forward in order to help you connect your ideas for your reader. Don’t end paragraphs with transitions; start with them.

Keep in mind that MEAT does not occur in that order. The “ T ransition” and the “ M ain Idea” often combine to form the first sentence—the topic sentence—and then paragraphs contain multiple sentences of evidence and analysis. For example, a paragraph might look like this: TM. E. E. A. E. E. A. A.

Part III: The Conclusion

A conclusion is the last paragraph of your essay, or, if you’re writing a really long essay, you might need 2 or 3 paragraphs to conclude. A conclusion typically does one of two things—or, of course, it can do both:

  • Summarizes the argument. Some instructors expect you not to say anything new in your conclusion. They just want you to restate your main points. Especially if you’ve made a long and complicated argument, it’s useful to restate your main points for your reader by the time you’ve gotten to your conclusion. If you opt to do so, keep in mind that you should use different language than you used in your introduction and your body paragraphs. The introduction and conclusion shouldn’t be the same.
  • For example, your argument might be significant to studies of a certain time period .
  • Alternately, it might be significant to a certain geographical region .
  • Alternately still, it might influence how your readers think about the future . You might even opt to speculate about the future and/or call your readers to action in your conclusion.

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English Summary

3 Parts of an Essay

There are three parts of an essay:

The Introduction

The conclusion.

Table of Contents

It should be brief, interesting and should strike the keynote of the subject. The first sentence placed at the beginning of the first paragraph should indicate what is to follow. It should, in fact, express clearly what is the essential theme of the subject.

Sometimes a short quotation, a proverb, a very brief story or a general remark about the subject may serve the purpose. But it is not safe, to begin with, a definition.

This is the main part of the essay. It should contain the necessary facts, ideas, illustrations and reflections of the writer on the given subject. Here one should adhere closely to the outline.

The paragraphs should be well constructed and in their proper sequence. One should not jump from point to point without showing the connection of one with the other.

The ending, like the beginning, should be brief and striking. It should be natural and not abrupt. If that is impossible, the essay should be completed by summarising the main points raised in the body of the essay. The last sentence, above all, should not only be striking but also pleasing to the mind and the ear.

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Parts of an Essay?

What Are the Parts of an Essay

Components of an Essay

An essay is a piece of writing that is written to provide information about a certain topic or simply to convince the reader. In every effective essay writing , there are three major parts: introduction , body , and essay conclusion .

  • The introduction.  This is where the subject or topic is introduced. The big picture, points, and ideas are briefly written here.
  • The body.  All the main ideas, topics, and subject are discussed here in details. This also includes evidence or information that support the essay.
  • The conclusion.  The last part of an essay and usually summarizes the overall topic or ideas of an essay.

How to Write the Introduction Essay?

The introduction is the door to the whole essay outline . It must be convincing enough to get the attention of the readers. The following are the guidelines for writing the introduction of the essay.

  • It must contain an attention-getter sentence or statement.
  • The introduction must sound interesting to capture the attention of the reader.
  • You can quote a statement about a topic or something related to the whole point of your essay.
  • The intro must move from general to specific.
  • At the end, there must be a thesis statement that gives an insight to the author’s evidence.

What Does the Body of an Essay Contain?

The body is the longest part of the essay and commonly highlights all the topics and ideas. The body must include the following:

  • The evidence and supporting details of the expository essay in addition to the author’s ideas.
  • A topic or sentences that link the discussion back to the thesis statement.
  • The logical ordering of the ideas. The chronological of time, ideas, and evidence.
  • A set of transition statements or sentences to create a good flow of the essay.
  • Sufficient examples, evidence, data, and information that must be relevant to the particular topic of the essay.

The Conclusion of the Essay

The conclusion is the last part of the essay, and should:

  • Emphasize on the major takeaways of the essay.
  • Wrap up and summarize the essay, as well as the arguments, ideas, and points.
  • Restate the main arguments in a simplified and clear manner that must be understood by the reader.
  • Guarantee that the reader is left with something to think about, especially the main point of your essay.

The Elements of an Essay

  • Thesis statement.  It is the main proposition of an essay. The thesis statement must be arguable that differentiates it from a fact and must be in a persuasive writing style.
  • Problem or question.  The problem statements or the important issue of the essay that must be defined and described in the essay.
  • Motive.  The reason for writing the essay.
  • Evidence.  The facts and data or information that supports the whole essay and prove the main point of the essay.
  • Analysis & reflection.  In which the writer turns the evidence into an arguable statement that provides the reader how the evidence supports, develops, or explained the essay’s thesis statement.
  • Structure.  The work that the writer does to organize the idea, the series of sub-topics and sections through which it is explained and developed.

give three main parts of an essay

Parts of an Essay Generator

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GKT103: General Knowledge for Teachers – Essays

The parts of an essay.

Now that we've examined the different kinds of essays, it's important to understand how all the pieces operate. Each part of an essay plays a particular role in conveying the writer's ideas to the reader. The following resource will show you how each part pulls together to create a unified essay.

How to Write an Essay

Parts of an Essay - Traditionally, it has been taught that a formal essay consists of three parts: the introductory paragraph or introduction, the body paragraphs, and the concluding paragraph. An essay does not need to be this simple, but it is a good starting point.

Introductory Paragraph

The introductory paragraph accomplishes three purposes: it captures the reader's interest, it suggests the importance of the essay's topic, and it ends with a thesis sentence. Often, the thesis sentence states a claim that consists of two or more related points. For example, a thesis might read:

A college essay has an introductory paragraph, several body paragraphs, and a concluding paragraph.

You are telling the reader what you think are the most important points which need to be addressed in your essay. For this reason, you need to relate the introduction directly to the question or topic. A strong thesis is essential to a good essay, as each paragraph of your essay should be related back to your thesis or else deleted. Thus, the thesis establishes the key foundation for your essay. A strong thesis not only states an idea but also uses solid examples to back it up. A weak thesis might be:

Wikipedia is a powerful resource in many ways.

As an alternative, a strong thesis for the same topic would be:

Wikipedia is a powerful resource because it allows users with knowledge in a specific area to share their knowledge, because it allows users to quickly find information about a vast array of topics, and because studies have confirmed that it is as accurate as any other encyclopedia.

Then, you could separate your body paragraphs into three sections: one explaining the open-source nature of the project, one explaining the variety and depth of information, and a final one using studies to confirm that Wikipedia is indeed as accurate as other encyclopedias.

Often, writing an introductory paragraph is the most difficult part of writing an essay. Facing a blank page can be daunting. Here are some suggestions for getting started. First, determine the context in which you want to place your topic. In other words, identify an overarching category in which you would place your topic, and then introduce your topic as a case-in-point. For example, if you are writing about dogs, you may begin by speaking about friends, dogs being an example of a very good friend. Alternatively, you can begin with a sentence on selective breeding, dogs being an example of extensive selective breeding. You can also begin with a sentence on means of protection, dogs being an example of a good way to stay safe. The context is the starting point for your introductory paragraph. The topic or thesis sentence is the ending point. Once the starting point and ending point are determined, it will be much easier to connect these points with the narrative of the opening paragraph. A good thesis statement, for example, if you are writing about dogs being very good friends, you could put:

A dog is an example of a very good friend because of X, Y, and Z.

Here, X, Y, and Z would be the topics explained in your body paragraphs. In the format of one such instance, X would be the topic of the second paragraph, Y would be the topic of the third paragraph, and Z would be the topic of the fourth paragraph, followed by a conclusion, in which you would summarize the thesis statement.

As we travel through our lives, we will identify many people as friends. In truth, most of these individuals are simply acquaintances. They will enter and depart from our existence as matters of mutual convenience. True friends will be there for you always. There is no friend truer than a dog.

Identifying a context can help shape the topic or thesis. Here, the writer decided to write about dogs. Then, the writer selected friends as the context, dogs being good examples of friends. This shaped the topic and narrowed the focus to dogs as friends. This would make writing the remainder of the essay much easier because it allows the writer to focus on aspects of dogs that make them good friends.

Body Paragraphs

Each body paragraph begins with a topic sentence. If the thesis contains multiple points or assertions, each body paragraph should support or justify them, preferably in the order the assertions originally stated in the thesis. Thus, the topic sentence for the first body paragraph will refer to the first point in the thesis sentence and the topic sentence for the second body paragraph will refer to the second point in the thesis sentence. Generally, if the thesis sentence contains three related points, there should be three body paragraphs, though you should base the number of paragraphs on the number of supporting points needed. If the core topic of the essay is the format of college essays, the thesis sentence might read:

The topic sentence for the first body paragraph might read:

The first paragraph of an essay is the introductory paragraph.

Sequentially, the topic sentence for the second body paragraph might read:

The introductory paragraph is followed by several body paragraphs.

And the topic sentence for the third body paragraph might read:

The college essay's final paragraph is its concluding paragraph.

Every body paragraph uses specific details, such as anecdotes, comparisons and contrasts, definitions, examples, expert opinions, explanations, facts, and statistics to support and develop the claim that its topic sentence makes.

When writing an essay for a class assignment, make sure to follow your teacher or professor's suggestions. Most teachers will reward creativity and thoughtful organization over dogmatic adherence to a prescribed structure. Many will not. If you are not sure how your teacher will respond to a specific structure, ask. Organizing your essay around the thesis sentence should begin with arranging the supporting elements to justify the assertion put forth in the thesis sentence. Not all thesis sentences will, or should, lay out each of the points you will cover in your essay. In the example introductory paragraph on dogs, the thesis sentence reads, "There is no friend truer than a dog". Here, it is the task of the body paragraphs to justify or prove the truth of this assertion, as the writer did not specify what points they would cover. The writer may next ask what characteristics dogs have that make them true friends. Each characteristic may be the topic of a body paragraph. Loyalty, companionship, protection, and assistance are all terms that the writer could apply to dogs as friends. Note that if the writer puts dogs in a different context, for example, working dogs, the thesis might be different, and they would be focusing on other aspects of dogs. It is often effective to end a body paragraph with a sentence that rationalizes its presence in the essay. Ending a body paragraph without some sense of closure may cause the thought to sound incomplete. Each body paragraph is something like a miniature essay in that they each need an introductory sentence that sounds important and interesting, and that they each need a good closing sentence in order to produce a smooth transition between one point and the next. Body paragraphs can be long or short. It depends on the idea you want to develop in your paragraph. Depending on the specific style of the essay, you may be able to use very short paragraphs to signal a change of subject or to explain how the rest of the essay is organized. Do not spend too long on any one point. Providing extensive background may interest some readers, but others would find it tiresome. Keep in mind that the main importance of an essay is to provide a basic background on a subject and, hopefully, to spark enough interest to induce further reading.

A true friend will be there for you whenever you need them. Any dog owner will say that there is nobody that will stick with you through thick and thin as much as a dog. My own dog can barely contain her joy when I come home from a hard day. Regardless of my mood, and my attitude towards her, she is always happy when I am home, and that is usually enough to make me feel better about everything.

True friends will help you when you are in need. Whether it is to protect their owner against some sort of threat or to help a blind person walk across the street, dogs are the most reliable companion a person could have. Few villains would attack a person walking a dog at night, and statistics show that homes with dogs are among the least likely to be broken into parts

The above example is a bit free-flowing and the writer intended it to be persuasive. The second paragraph combines various attributes of dogs including protection and companionship. Here is when doing a little research can also help. Imagine how much more effective the last statement would be if the writer cited some specific statistics and backed them up with a reliable reference.

Concluding Paragraph

The concluding paragraph usually restates the thesis and leaves the reader something about the topic to think about. If appropriate, it may also issue a call to act, inviting the reader to take a specific course of action with regard to the points that the essay presented. Aristotle suggested that speakers and, by extension, writers should tell their audience what they are going to say, say it, and then tell them what they have said. The three-part essay model, consisting of an introductory paragraph, several body paragraphs, and a concluding paragraph, follows this strategy.

As with all writing, it is important to know your audience. All writing is persuasive, and if you write with your audience in mind, it will make your argument much more persuasive to that particular audience. When writing for a class assignment, the audience is your teacher. Depending on the assignment, the point of the essay may have nothing to do with the assigned topic. In most class assignments, the purpose is to persuade your teacher that you have a good grasp of grammar and spelling, that you can organize your thoughts in a comprehensive manner, and, perhaps, that you are capable of following instructions and adhering to some dogmatic formula the teacher regards as an essay. It is much easier to persuade your teacher that you have these capabilities if you can make your essay interesting to read at the same time. Place yourself in your teacher's position and try to imagine reading one formulaic essay after another. If you want yours to stand out, capture your teacher's attention and make your essay interesting, funny, or compelling.

It is no accident that many people consider their dogs as part of their family. Just like every other member, dogs contribute to the happiness and well-being of the home, making the burdens of caring for them well worth the effort. Dogs deserve love and respect every bit as much as they love and respect us. After all, what more can a friend be?

In the above example, the focus shifted slightly and talked about dogs as members of the family. Many would suggest it departs from the logical organization of the rest of the essay, and some teachers may consider it unrelated and take points away. However, contrary to the common wisdom of "tell them what you are going to say, say it, and then tell them what you have said," you may find it more interesting and persuasive to shift away from it as the writer did here, and then, in the end, return to the core point of the essay. This gives an additional effect to what an audience would otherwise consider a very boring conclusion.

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Easter Sunday

Baltimore Key bridge collapse live updates: Two bodies recovered, authorities say

Investigation of Baltimore bridge collapse picks up speed as divers recover 2 bodies from water

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We’ve paused today’s live coverage, but there’s still lots to catch up on. See what you missed below and follow the AP’s latest coverage on the Baltimore Key Bridge collapse .

Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge collapsed after a container ship lost power and rammed into the bridge early Tuesday, sending vehicles plunging into the water. A recovery effort resumed Wednesday, with divers searching for six construction workers who are still unaccounted for.

Here’s what to know:

  • Victims: At least eight people went into the water. Two were rescued but the other six, part of a construction crew that had been filling potholes on the bridge, are missing and presumed dead.
  • Investigation: The cargo ship, called Dali, lost power and issued a mayday call shortly before it rammed the bridge. The U.S. Coast Guard boarded the vessel Wednesday to collect evidence about the exact circumstances of the crash.
  • Impact: The collapse is diverting shipping and trucking around one of the busiest ports on America’s East Coast, creating delays and raising costs in the latest disruption to global supply chains. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg says it’s too soon to say how long it will take to reopen the port or replace the bridge.

The cargo ship that caused the Baltimore bridge collapse was carrying hazardous materials, the National Transportation Safety Board said.

NTSB Chair Jennifer Homendy says there are 56 containers aboard containing hazardous materials, including corrosives, flammables and lithium ion batteries. She said some containers were breached and a sheen there was a sheen in the water that will be dealt with by authorities. She said the voyage data recorder has been recovered. Homendy said the investigation could take 12 to 24 months but that the NTSB will not hesitate to issue urgent safety recommendations during that time. She said a preliminary report should be released in two to four weeks.

“It’s a massive undertaking for an investigation,” Homendy said. “It’s a very tragic event.”

Authorities have released the identities of the two people recovered from the water Wednesday morning at the site of the Baltimore bridge collapse.

Maryland State Police Superintendent Col. Roland L. Butler says 35-year-old Alejandro Hernandez Fuentes and 26-year-old Dorlian Ronial Castillo Cabrera were recovered from a red pickup truck submerged in about 25 feet (7.62 meters) of water near the bridge’s middle span.

Jesus Campos, who has worked on the bridge for Brawner Builders and knows members of the construction crew who died, said he was told they were on a break and some were sitting in their trucks to warm up when the bridge collapsed.

Butler says it is no longer safe for divers to continue operations in the area.

“We have exhausted all search efforts in the areas around this wreckage, and based on sonar scans, we firmly believe that the vehicles are encased in the superstructure and concrete,” Butler said.

The ship that crashed into a bridge in Baltimore was undergoing “routine engine maintenance” in the port beforehand, the Coast Guard said.

U.S. Coast Guard Rear Admiral Shannon Gilreath said at a news conference on Wednesday that authorities had been informed that the ship was going to undergo routine engine maintenance before it lost power. But he said authorities were not informed of any problems.

The bodies of two people have been recovered from the site of the Baltimore bridge that collapsed into a river early Tuesday when a ship crashed into it, said Col. Roland L. Butler Jr., superintendent for Maryland State Police.

Butler said Wednesday that a 35-year-old and a 26-year-old were recovered from a red pickup truck in the Patapsco River near the mid-span of the collapsed Francis Scott Key Bridge.

The six construction workers who were missing and presumed dead were from Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, Butler said.

Gov. Wes Moore told the families of the victims in Spanish, “Estamos contigo, ahora y siempre” which means, “we are with you, now and always.”

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore is getting a closer look at the aftermath of the bridge collapse in Baltimore.

The governor’s office says Moore boarded a Coast Guard ship with federal and local officials Wednesday to better understand the ship’s path and how the crash happened. His office said his goal was to support the Coast Guard and other federal partners, thank first responders and learn more about what happened.

“We will come together around Baltimore, and we will rebuild together.” Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg says the Biden administration is focused on four areas related to transportation as the investigation continues in Baltimore.

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said at a news conference earlier today that he didn’t know of a bridge “that has been constructed to withstand a direct impact from a vessel of this size.” Just how big is the ship?

The Dali, which was headed from Baltimore to Colombo, Sri Lanka and flying under a Singapore flag, is about 985 feet (300 meters) long and about 157 feet (48 meters) wide, according to according to data from Marine Traffic. Here’s a look at how that compares to some familiar landmarks:

Ship traffic entering and leaving the Port of Baltimore has been suspended indefinitely after a cargo ship lost power and crashed into Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge causing it to collapse on Tuesday. Authorities say it is too soon to know how long it will take to reopen the port or replace the bridge.

One of the construction workers presumed dead in Baltimore was a 38-year-old father of two who dreamed of someday returning to his native Honduras, his brother says.

Carlos Suazo says his brother, Maynor Suazo, had been in the United States for 18 years but “always dreamed of, in his old age, retiring peacefully in Honduras.” He describes him as the beloved youngest sibling among four girls and four boys.

“He was someone who was always happy, was always thinking about the future. He was a visionary,” Carlos Suazo says.

He last spoke to his brother Sunday, when they had lunch to discuss planning a family birthday party.

He says the family hasn’t lost hope his brother will be found alive.

An engineering expert says there would be no economically feasible way to protect a bridge from a large ship strike like what happened with Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore and he’s not even sure it would perform successfully in a similar incident. (27 March 2024)

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg says it’s too soon to say if regulations would be waived to rebuild the bridge and reopen the port. But he says President Joe Biden has said the federal government should “tear down any barriers, bureaucratic as well as financial” that could affect the timeline of any rebuild.

Buttigieg also had a message for Republicans in Congress who might oppose having the federal government pay for the effort. Infrastructure should be a bipartisan issue, he said at a White House news briefing.

“Today this is happening in Baltimore, tomorrow it could be their districts,” he said. “We really need to stand together, red blue and purple, to get these things done.”

The collapse of Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge is diverting driving and shipping around one of the busiest ports on America’s East Coast. Baltimore Harbor Tunnel expected to absorb traffic.

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg says it’s too soon to say how long it will take to reopen the Port of Baltimore or replace the destroyed bridge.

Speaking at a White House news conference, Buttigieg noted that the bridge took five years to construct.

“That does not necessarily mean it will take five years to replace,” he said.

Shown is the wreckage of Francis Scott Key Bridge as seen from Dundalk, Md., on Wednesday, March 27, 2024, Recovery efforts resumed Wednesday for the construction workers who are presumed dead after the cargo ship hit a pillar of the bridge, causing the structure to collapse. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Shown is the wreckage of Francis Scott Key Bridge as seen from Dundalk, Md., on Wednesday, March 27, 2024, Recovery efforts resumed Wednesday for the construction workers who are presumed dead after the cargo ship hit a pillar of the bridge, causing the structure to collapse. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Coast Guard Deputy Commandant for Operations Vice Admiral Peter Gautier speaks about the Francis Scott Key bridge collapse during a press briefing at the White House, Wednesday, March 27, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Coast Guard Deputy Commandant for Operations Vice Admiral Peter Gautier speaks about the Francis Scott Key bridge collapse during a press briefing at the White House, Wednesday, March 27, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Coast Guard Vice Adm. Peter Gautier says hazardous materials aboard the damaged ship pose no threat to public safety.

Gautier said at a White House news briefing Wednesday that the ship is holding over 1.5 million gallons of fuel, and that more than 50 of the cargo containers on board contain hazardous material. But he says that the ship is stable and that authorities have determined there is no safety risk.

“There is no threat to the public,” he says.

Coast Guard Deputy Commandant for Operations Vice Admiral Peter Gautier listens as Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg speaks about the Francis Scott Key bridge collapse during a press briefing at the White House, Wednesday, March 27, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Coast Guard Deputy Commandant for Operations Vice Admiral Peter Gautier listens as Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg speaks about the Francis Scott Key bridge collapse during a press briefing at the White House, Wednesday, March 27, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg says the Biden administration is focused on four areas related to transportation as the investigation continues in Baltimore.

Speaking at a White House news conference, Buttigieg said officials are focused on reopening the port, dealing with supply chain issues, rebuilding the bridge and addressing surface transportation.

“We are already taking steps toward each goal,” he said. Buttigieg said he will meet with shipping and supply chain officials Thursday.

“We are going to help to get it open as soon as possible,” he said.

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre says President Joe Biden has instructed his team “to move heaven and earth” to aid in the recovery and rebuilding in effort in Baltimore.

The president’s message to the city is: “We will be with the people of Baltimore every step of the way,” she said at a news conference Wednesday afternoon.

Coast Guard Deputy Commandant for Operations Vice Admiral Peter Gautier, left, and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, right, listen as White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre speaks about the Francis Scott Key bridge collapse during a press briefing at the White House, Wednesday, March 27, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Coast Guard Deputy Commandant for Operations Vice Admiral Peter Gautier, left, and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, right, listen as White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre speaks about the Francis Scott Key bridge collapse during a press briefing at the White House, Wednesday, March 27, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

From 1960 to 2015, there were 35 major bridge collapses worldwide due to ship or barge collision, with a total of 342 people killed, according to the World Association for Waterborne Transport Infrastructure.

You’re driving along, and without warning, the roadway drops from beneath you.

There are a few seconds of falling, with thoughts possibly racing about family or loved ones, followed by a jarring impact, and most likely injury.

Tuesday’s collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore following a ship strike brought back jarring memories of their own ordeals to people who survived previous bridge collapses.

FILE - In this Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2007 picture, vehicles are scattered along the broken remains of the Interstate 35W bridge, which stretches between Minneapolis and St. Paul, after it collapsed into the Mississippi River during evening rush hour. (Stacy Bengs/The Minnesota Daily via AP)

FILE - In this Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2007 picture, vehicles are scattered along the broken remains of the Interstate 35W bridge, which stretches between Minneapolis and St. Paul, after it collapsed into the Mississippi River during evening rush hour. (Stacy Bengs/The Minnesota Daily via AP)

Linda Paul, 72, survived a bridge collapse in Minneapolis on Aug. 1, 2007. The Interstate 35W bridge collapsed without warning into the Mississippi River in downtown Minneapolis during the evening rush hour.

Paul was 55 then, working as a shop-at-home designer for a local company and driving home in a minivan that doubled as a “store on wheels,” loaded with fabrics and sample books. Traffic was at a total standstill, leaving her stuck on the bridge around 6 p.m.

“I remember looking around and thinking that there was definitely something wrong,” Paul said.

“I looked ahead and realized that the center section of the bridge was going down, and knew at that point that there was a good chance I would go down with it. And that is exactly what happened.”

Police later told her that she plunged down a 50-foot (15-meter) slope as the concrete deck of the bridge collapsed. She was still inside the minivan as it fell onto wreckage on the riverbank, at the water’s edge.

▶ Read the full story: What it’s like to survive a bridge collapse

Officials in Singapore say they will conduct their own investigation into the bridge collapse, in addition to supporting U.S. authorities.

The ship that struck the bridge, the Dali, was traveling under a Singaporean flag. The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore said Wednesday it was working with the ship’s management company, Synergy Marine Group, to get information to the U.S. Coast Guard for its investigation.

The agency also said Singapore’s Transport Safety Investigation Bureau will independently investigate, not to determine liability, but to identify lessons for the future.

Today’s White House press briefing looks likely to feature an update on the situation in Baltimore: “Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre will be joined by Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg and Vice Admiral Peter Gautier, Deputy Commandant for Operations for the United States Coast Guard,” the White House said in a note to media.

The briefing is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. EDT.

A 2023 inspection of the ship in a Chilean port turned up a problem with the fuel heater’s pressure gauges, but it was corrected before the ship left the port, the Maritime Authority of the Chilean Navy says.

Previous reports had indicated the June inspection of the Dali in Chile identified a problem with the ship’s “propulsion and auxiliary machinery,” according to the shipping information website Equasis, but the records didn’t elaborate.

A container ship rests against wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge on Tuesday, March 26, 2024, as seen from Venice on the Bay, Md. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)

A container ship rests against wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge on Tuesday, March 26, 2024, as seen from Venice on the Bay, Md. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)

The Chilean Navy said in a statement Wednesday that the ship had been inspected in the port of San Antonio on June 27, 2023, and that the pressure gauges of the fuel heaters “were detected to be illegible.”

The problem was corrected the same day, and the ship was able to depart, the Chilean Navy says.

The Dali was most recently inspected by the U.S. Coast Guard in New York in September 2023, and no deficiencies were detected, according to Equasis.

The president of Mexico says three Mexicans were among the workers on the bridge when it collapsed.

Two of the Mexican workers are missing. The third was injured and rescued.

“He is safe now,” President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said Wednesday.

López Obrador also highlighted the contributions migrant workers make to the U.S. economy.

“This demonstrates that migrants go out and do risky jobs at midnight, and for this reason they do not deserve to be treated as they are by certain insensitive, irresponsible politicians in the United States,” he said.

One truck has been recovered from the water, but at least one vehicle remains hanging from the metal, according to a Homeland Security memo that was described to The Associated Press by a law enforcement official.

The official was not authorized to discuss details of the document or the investigation and spoke to the AP on the condition of anonymity.

Gov. Wes Moore on Wednesday praised divers who have spent hours in frigid water.

“They are down there in darkness where they can literally see about a foot in front of them,” he said. “They are trying to navigate mangled metal and they’re also in a place it is now presumed that people have lost their lives, so the work of these first responders, the work of these divers, I cannot stress enough how remarkable these individuals are.”

Maryland lawmakers are drafting emergency legislation to help workers affected by the bridge collapse.

State Sen. Bill Ferguson said he and a fellow Democratic lawmaker, Del. Luke Clippinger, are proposing income replacement for the thousands of workers who rely on daily operations at the Port of Baltimore. He said he spent hours Tuesday talking to dock workers, business owners and others.

“The human cost of lives lost yesterday is overwhelming and tragic,” Ferguson posted Wednesday on X. “The economic and stability loss to the thousands impacted in the days ahead cannot be understated.”

Maryland Governor Wes Moore is highlighting the importance of the collapsed of the Francis Scott Key Bridge to the U.S. economy and says it is “imperative” to get the port of Baltimore up and running as quickly as possible

People pray for officials including Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott, center, during a vigil near the scene where a container ship collided with a support on the Francis Scott Key Bridge, at Mount Olive Baptist Church in Dundalk, Md., Tuesday, March 26, 2024. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

People pray for officials including Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott, center, during a vigil near the scene where a container ship collided with a support on the Francis Scott Key Bridge, at Mount Olive Baptist Church in Dundalk, Md., Tuesday, March 26, 2024. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Among the six missing and presumed dead after the bridge collapse are people from Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico, according to diplomats from those countries.

Guatemala’s consulate in Maryland confirmed that two of the missing were Guatemalan citizens working on the bridge. Mexico’s Washington consulate also confirmed in a statement posted on X that Mexican citizens were among the missing but did not say how many.

The Honduran man was identified as Maynor Yassir Suazo Sandoval by the deputy foreign affairs minister of Honduras.

Father Ako Walker, a Catholic priest at Sacred Heart of Jesus, said outside a vigil that he spent time with the families of the workers as they waited for news of their loved ones.

“You can see the pain etched on their faces,” Walker said.

Rear Adm. Shannon Gilreath, commander of the Fifth Coast Guard District, speaks in Dundalk, Md., on Tuesday, March 26, 2024.  (AP Photo/Ted Shaffrey)

Rear Adm. Shannon Gilreath, commander of the Fifth Coast Guard District, speaks in Dundalk, Md., on Tuesday, March 26, 2024. (AP Photo/Ted Shaffrey)

A retired Coast Guard officer says he expects the focus in Baltimore to shift soon to two main objectives: investigating what happened and reopening the channel as quickly and safely as possible.

Aaron Davenport, a senior researcher with the RAND Corporation, isn’t involved in the aftermath of the bridge collapse, but he described what he expects to happen based on his Coast Guard experience.

Divers and remote equipment likely will be used to survey debris on the channel floor both as part of the investigation and in preparation for clearing the channel, he says. Heavy-duty barges and cranes will be needed for the salvage operations. Officials also will need to assess damage to the ship.

“We have this big, giant ship. You don’t want the ship to sink. You don’t want it to leak fuel oil all over the port,” he says.

Eventually the ship would likely be towed back to port and the cargo offloaded. Davenport says the ship’s owners are responsible for getting the ship out and the damage to the bridge.

However, they have to submit plans to stakeholders, and the federal government can take over if they don’t take prompt and effective action.

A container ship rests against wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge near sunrise on Wednesday, March 27, 2024, in Baltimore, Md. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

A container ship rests against wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge near sunrise on Wednesday, March 27, 2024, in Baltimore, Md. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

National Transportation Safety Board Chair Jennifer Homendy says investigators expect to have more information Wednesday on the timeline of events after information from a ship data recorder was sent to an agency lab.

Homendy says in an interview with WBAL-TV that the U.S. Coast Guard boarded the vessel Tuesday and downloaded the voyage data recorder. It has been sent to the NTSB’s lab, and she says they expect to have information Wednesday on the timeline.

If the weather allows, Homendy says, investigators will board the ship to look for electronics and documentation. Their focus will be on collecting evidence.

It was the middle of the night when a dispatcher’s warning crackled over the radio: A massive cargo ship had lost its steering capabilities and was heading toward the Francis Scott Key Bridge .

Within about 90 seconds, police officers responded that they had managed to stop vehicle traffic over the Baltimore bridge in both directions. One said he was about to drive onto the bridge to alert a construction crew.

But it was too late. Powerless and laden with huge containers, the vessel smashed into a support pillar .

“The whole bridge just fell down,” a frantic officer said. “Start, start whoever, everybody ... the whole bridge just collapsed.”

Bridge Collapse-First Responders.mp3

▶ Read more: What we know about the moments before the bridge’s collapse.

A container ship lost power and rammed into a major bridge in Baltimore early Tuesday, causing it to snap and plunge into the river below. Several vehicles fell into the chilly waters, and rescuers are searching for survivors.

Recovery efforts have resumed at the collapse site.

Divers returned to the site early Wednesday after challenging overnight conditions improved. Maryland State Police spokesperson Elena Russo said in a text message that “recovery efforts are underway.”

The six people unaccounted for and presumed dead were part of a construction crew repairing potholes on the bridge.

Recovery efforts are planned to resume Wednesday morning at the collapse site.

The search-and-rescue mission is transitioning to one of search and recovery, officials announced Tuesday night.

Divers are expected to return to the site early Wednesday when challenging overnight conditions improve.

Authorities say all six workers missing after a Baltimore bridge collapsed Tuesday are presumed dead and the search for them has been suspended until Wednesday morning.

Col. Roland L. Butler Jr., superintendent for Maryland State Police, said Tuesday evening that the search and rescue mission was transitioning to one of search and recovery. He says divers would return to the site at 6 a.m. Wednesday when challenging overnight conditions were expected to improve.

Sunrise shows damage to Baltimore bridge after being rammed by container ship

The head of a trade association for maritime pilots says the pilot of the ship that caused the Baltimore bridge collapse tried to slow it down before the crash.

Clay Diamond, executive director of the American Pilots’ Association, said he has been in close contact with officials from the Association of Maryland Pilots who described to him what happened as the ship approached the bridge. He said when the ship was a few minutes out, it lost all power, including to its engines.

The pilot immediately ordered the rudder hard to port to keep the ship from turning right and ordered the port anchor be dropped, which it was, Diamond said. The pilot also contacted a dispatch office to get the bridge shut down.

Diamond said widely circulated images show the ship’s lights turning off and then back on, sparking questions about whether the vessel had regained power. But, he said, the emergency generators that kicked in turned the lights back on but not the ship’s propulsion.

Every foreign-flagged ship coming into U.S. waters must have a state-licensed pilot on board. Pilots board the ships before they enter the local waterways and take “navigational control” of the ship, he said, meaning they give orders for the ship’s speed and direction. “These are among the most highly trained mariners in the world,” Diamond said.

The stunning collapse of Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge is diverting shipping and trucking around one of the busiest ports on America’s East Coast, creating delays and raising costs in the latest disruption to global supply chains.

After the container ship Dali hit the bridge and brought it down early Tuesday , ship traffic entering and leaving the Port of Baltimore was suspended indefinitely. That will require rerouting vessels or their cargo to other ports, potentially causing congestion and delays for importers, said Judah Levine, head of research for the global freight booking platform Freightos.

“Aside from the obvious tragedy, this incident will have significant and long-lasting impacts on the region,” American Trucking Associations spokesperson Jessica Gail said, calling Key Bridge and Baltimore’s port “critical components’’ of the nation’s infrastructure.

Gail noted that 1.3 million trucks cross the bridge every year — 3,600 a day. Trucks that carry hazardous materials will now have to make 30 miles of detours around Baltimore because they are prohibited from using the city’s tunnels, she said, adding to delays and increasing fuel costs.

▶ Read the full story

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg says the path to rebuilding the collapsed Baltimore bridge won’t be easy or quick.

“This is no ordinary bridge. This is one of the cathedrals of American infrastructure,” he said at a news conference in Baltimore on Tuesday afternoon. “It has been part of the skyline for this region for longer than many of us have been alive.”

Buttigieg thanked first responders, including those still in the water as he spoke, and offered comfort to those “who woke up today to the news that no one wants to receive.”

“This is an excruciating day for several families,” he said.

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore said he’s spent time with the families of victims. “The strength of these families is absolutely remarkable,” he said.

One person involved in the Baltimore bridge collapse has been discharged from the hospital, an official with the medical center said.

Dr. David Efron, the chief of trauma at the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center at the University of Maryland Medical Center, did not comment on the nature or severity of the patient’s injuries. The hospital has not released the patient’s name.

Correction: This post has been updated to correct that just one patient was treated at R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center in connection with the bridge collapse, not two.

A fellow construction company employee says he was told his missing co-workers were on a break and some were sitting in their trucks when a Baltimore bridge collapsed early Tuesday after being struck by a container ship.

Brawner Builders employee Jesus Campos says he learned about the disaster from a co-worker and immediately worried about colleagues he knew were working on the bridge.

“When he told me that, they came to mind and I was praying to God that nothing had happened to them,” Campos said, speaking in Spanish.

“It is so hard for me to describe. I know that a month ago I was there, and I know what it feels like when the trailers pass. Imagine knowing that it is falling. It is so hard, one would not know what to do,” Campos said.

This satellite image provided by Maxar Technologies shows a view of the Francis Scott Key Bridge that was struck by a container ship in Baltimore, Md., on Tuesday, March 26, 2024. (Maxaar Technologies via AP)

This satellite image provided by Maxar Technologies shows a view of the Francis Scott Key Bridge that was struck by a container ship in Baltimore, Md., on Tuesday, March 26, 2024. (Maxaar Technologies via AP)

A senior executive the company that employed the construction workers said six of the company’s workers are presumed to be dead and one worker was hospitalized.

Jeffrey Pritzker, executive vice president of Brawner Builders, said the crew was working in the middle of the bridge’s span when the crash happened and crumbled the bridge.

The bodies of the workers have not yet been recovered, but they are presumed to have died given the water’s depth and the amount of time that has passed since the crash, he said.

“This was so completely unforeseen,” he said. “We don’t know what else to say.”

“We take such great pride in safety, and we have cones and signs and lights and barriers and flaggers,” he added. “But we never foresaw that the bridge would collapse.”

Two men observe the collapsed Francis Scott Key Bridge wreckage from Ft. McHenry, Md., on Tuesday, March 26, 2024. (Ulysses Muñoz/The Baltimore Banner via AP)

Two men observe the collapsed Francis Scott Key Bridge wreckage from Ft. McHenry, Md., on Tuesday, March 26, 2024. (Ulysses Muñoz/The Baltimore Banner via AP)

Radio traffic obtained from the Broadcastify.com archive indicates officers were just about to alert a construction crew when a major bridge in Baltimore collapsed after being hit by a container ship that had lost power.

The Maryland Transportation Authority first responder radio traffic includes a dispatcher putting out a call saying a ship had lost its steering ability and asking officers to stop all traffic. It took officers less than two minutes to stop traffic on the bridge.

One officer who had stopped traffic radioed that he was going to drive onto the bridge to notify the construction crew once a second officer arrived. But seconds later, a frantic officer radioed that the bridge had collapsed.

The six people still unaccounted for were part of the construction crew, which was filling potholes on the bridge.

Paul J. Wiedefeld, center, Maryland's transportation secretary, walks near the scene where a container ship collided with a support on the Francis Scott Key Bridge, Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark)

Paul J. Wiedefeld, center, Maryland’s transportation secretary, walks near the scene where a container ship collided with a support on the Francis Scott Key Bridge, Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark)

The head of a supply chain management company says Americans should expect shortages of goods as the Baltimore bridge collapse affects ocean container shipping and East Coast trucking logistics.

“It’s not just the port of Baltimore that’s going to be impacted,” said Ryan Petersen, CEO of Flexport.

Petersen says attacks on cargo ships in the Red Sea connecting Asia with Europe and the United States have forced traffic away from the Suez Canal and around the tip of Africa. At the same time, there’s been increased congestion in the Panama Canal. Petersen says U.S. importers are increasingly shifting to West Coast ports which in turn may have their own back-ups.

“You get this vicious feedback loop,” he said.

Petersen was working with his team Tuesday to reroute about 800 shipping containers currently making their way to Baltimore’s port.

“It’s a scramble because each of those containers has now a new journey to clear customs, you’ve got to get a different truck to pick it up at a different port, it creates a whole lot of downstream work,” he said.

Inspectors in June found a problem with the machinery of the same ship that caused the Baltimore bridge collapse early Tuesday.

But according to the shipping information system Equasis, a more recent examination of the ship, called the Dali, didn’t identify any deficiencies.

A container ship rests against wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge on Tuesday, March 26, 2024, as seen from Dundalk, Md. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

A container ship rests against wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge on Tuesday, March 26, 2024, as seen from Dundalk, Md. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

The Dali, owned by Grace Ocean PTE, has been inspected at least 27 times at ports around the world since it was built in 2015. An inspection at a port in Chile in June identified a problem with the ship’s “propulsion and auxiliary machinery,” according to Equasis, but the website’s online records didn’t elaborate.

The most recent inspection listed for the Dali was conducted by the U.S. Coast Guard in New York on Sept. 13, 2023. According to the Equasis data, the “standard examination” didn’t identify any deficiencies.

A July 2016 inspection in Belgium determined hull damage had impaired the Dali’s seaworthiness after it struck berth used for mooring vessels at the Port of Antwerp.

President Joe Biden said Tuesday he plans to travel to Baltimore “as quickly as I can” and that he plans for the federal government to pick up the entire cost of reconstruction of the Francis Scott Key Bridge, which collapsed earlier in the day after a container ship lost power and struck it.

“We’re going to rebuild that port together,” Biden said in brief remarks from the White House, shortly before departing for North Carolina.

President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the Francis Scott Key bridge collapse in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Tuesday, March 26, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the Francis Scott Key bridge collapse at the White House. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

The president said he expects lawmakers on Capitol Hill to support his bid to ensure the U.S. government pays for rebuilding the bridge.

“This is going to take some time,” Biden said. “The people of Baltimore can count on us, though, to stick with them at every step of the way until the port is reopened and the bridge is rebuilt.”

Biden’s expected challenger in the presidential race this year, Republican Donald Trump, as of midday Tuesday has not commented publicly on the bridge collapse.

Boats move near a container ship as it rests against wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge on Tuesday, March 26, 2024, as seen from Dundalk, Md. The ship rammed into the major bridge in Baltimore early Tuesday, causing it to collapse in a matter of seconds and creating a terrifying scene as several vehicles plunged into the chilly river below. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Boats move near a container ship as it rests against wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Authorities are piecing together what led to the bridge collapse in Baltimore. But so far, we know that Maryland Gov. Wes Moore said a large cargo ship lost power and issued a mayday call moments before it struck the bridge early Tuesday, though it was still moving toward the span at a rapid speed.

The Francis Scott Key Bridge broke apart and tumbled into the Patapsco River. Two people were rescued. But officials say they haven’t been able to account for six others.

The Baltimore Orioles have canceled a workout and rally for fans that had been planned for Tuesday night.

The event at Oriole Park at Camden Yards was part of the leadup to Thursday’s Opening Day, when the team will host the Los Angeles Angels. Instead, the team said, the event was canceled in light of the bridge collapse.

“Baltimore, we’re a tight-knit and resilient community,” the team posted on X. “Together we will get through this.”

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with one of the bridge’s support Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. The major bridge in Baltimore snapped and collapsed after a container ship rammed into it early Tuesday, and several vehicles fell into the river below. Rescuers were searching for multiple people in the water. (WJLA via AP)

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with one of the bridge’s support Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. (WJLA via AP)

A major bridge that collapsed in Baltimore after getting hit by a ship is named for Francis Scott Key, who turned a wartime experience in the early 19th century into the poem that became the national anthem of the United States.

During the War of 1812 between the United States and the British, Key was on a ship to negotiate an American prisoner’s release and witnessed a 25-hour British bombardment of Fort McHenry. He saw that the American flag stayed up through the hours of darkness and was still at the top of the fort when the morning came. He turned it into a poem.

▶ Read more about Key and the national anthem

The bridge did not appear to have pier protection to withstand the cargo ship crash, according to a professor of civil and environmental engineering.

Professor Roberto Leon, of Virginia Tech, said he reviewed the video of the crash Tuesday.

“If a bridge pier without adequate protection is hit by a ship of this size, there is very little that the bridge could do,” Leon said.

Maryland recently retrofitted another bridge with pier protection devices for about $100 million, he said.

It’s expensive, but the price would pale in comparison with expected losses from the damaged bridge, including additional miles driven, fuel and business costs, he said.

Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge collapsed after a container ship lost power and rammed into the bridge early Tuesday, sending vehicles plunging into the water.

Donald Heinbuch, a retired fire chief for Baltimore, said he was startled awake by a deep rumbling that shook his house for several seconds.

“It felt like an earthquake,” he said. “Or like rolling thunder.”

Heinbuch turned on his police scanner and discovered the noise had come from the nearby bridge, a favored fishing spot that he’d driven over countless times. He said he rushed to the scene in shock.

“The ship was there, and the bridge was in the water, like it was blown up,” he said.

Heinbuch said he watched divers slip into their gear and coordinate a rescue plan as pontoon boats made their way to shore. Several departments also offered help, he said.

“All these little things that we practiced all the time had to be put in place,” Heinbuch said. “Everyone acted fast ... even as the significance of what had happened was still sinking in.”

The most recent federal data shows the bridge was rated as being in fair condition overall before the crash.

The Federal Highway Administration rates bridges on the condition of their individual components. In a national bridge inventory released in June, inspectors rated the Key Bridge’s deck, substructure and superstructure — or the component that absorbs the live traffic load — as satisfactory.

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with one of the bridge’s support Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. The major bridge in Baltimore snapped and collapsed after a container ship rammed into it early Tuesday, and several vehicles fell into the river below. Rescuers were searching for multiple people in the water. (WJLA via AP)

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with one of the bridge’s supports Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. (WJLA via AP)

The bridge carried an estimated 30,800 vehicles a day on average in 2019. According to the Maryland Transportation Authority, that translates to about 11.3 million vehicles a year across the bridge, which was built in the 1970s and was 1.6 miles (2.6 kilometers) long.

The president is expected to speak at 12 p.m. EDT. Follow his remarks live:

A bystander looks at the wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge on Tuesday, March 26, 2024, as seen from Pasadena, Md. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)

A bystander looks at the wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge on Tuesday, March 26, 2024, as seen from Pasadena, Md. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)

Synergy Marine, which operated the ship that hit the bridge , and the ship’s owner, Grace Ocean Private Ltd, have been sued at least four times in U.S. federal court on allegations of negligence and other claims tied to worker injuries on other ships owned and operated by the Singapore-based companies.

One lawsuit, in 2019, involved a man from Oregon who broke several bones when a rope ladder he was using to board a refrigerated cargo vessel snapped, sending him 25 feet to the ground.

Also that year, a Texas worker was injured when a hatch on the same ship, the M/V Star Leader, was prematurely opened without warning by a ship’s crew member.

In 2021, a longshoreman in Savannah, Georgia, sued Synergy when he tumbled 5 feet on a gangway whose handrail collapsed, injuring his back and shoulder.

All three lawsuits were settled out of court.

A fourth case, involving a worker at the port of Houston who was pinned underneath a stack of metal pipes he was trying to remove, was dismissed.

The top federal prosecutor in Maryland says there is no evidence linking the bridge collapse to terrorism.

U.S. Attorney Erek Barron said his office will continue to coordinate with federal, state and local officials to provide support.

The White House says Biden met with senior officials about the bridge collapse Tuesday morning and will continue to receive updates. Members of his administration are staying in close contact with state and local officials.

A container ship as it rests against wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge on Tuesday, March 26, 2024, as seen from Dundalk, Md. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

A container ship as it rests against wreckage of the Francis Scott Key Bridge on Tuesday, March 26, 2024, as seen from Dundalk, Md. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Six people remain unaccounted for after the bridge collapse, and all are believed to have been working on it at the time, officials said.

The construction workers were repairing potholes, Maryland Transportation Secretary Paul Wiedefeld said at a news conference Tuesday.

Gov. Wes Moore said he was thankful that after the cargo ship’s distress call, authorities were able to stop cars from going over the bridge.

“These people are heroes,” Moore said. “They saved lives last night.”

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore, left, speaks during a news conference as Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) looks on near the scene where a container ship collided with a support on the Francis Scott Key Bridge, Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark)

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore, left, speaks during a news conference as Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) looks on near the scene where a container ship collided with a support on the Francis Scott Key Bridge, Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark)

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore says the cargo ship reported losing power just before it crashed and caused the bridge to collapse.

Moore said Tuesday that a mayday call from the ship allowed officials to limit traffic on the bridge before the crash.

A preliminary investigation suggests that the crash was an accident, and that there’s no credible evidence of a terrorist attack, Moore, a Democrat, said at a news conference near the collapsed bridge.

“This morning, our state is in shock,” he said.

“We are Maryland tough and we are Baltimore strong,” Moore said. “So in the face of heartbreak, we come together.”

The Singapore-flagged Dali was built in 2015 and has been managed almost from its launch by Synergy Marine, which is also based in Singapore and manages a fleet of a more than 600 container ships, cargo vessels, oil tankers and other vessels.

The shipping industry is plagued by safety concerns and often shoddy oversight. But the Dali was last inspected in September 2023 in New York, and no deficiencies were reported at the time.

The mayor of Baltimore has declared a state of emergency in response to the bridge collapse.

Mayor Brandon Scott, a Democrat, issued an executive order Tuesday morning to deploy and expand emergency resources. The state of emergency will remain in place for 30 days and is subject to renewal or cancellation as conditions warrant.

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with one of the bridge’s supports, Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. The major bridge in Baltimore snapped and collapsed after a container ship rammed into it early Tuesday, and several vehicles fell into the river below. Rescuers were searching for multiple people in the water. (Kaitlin Newman/The Baltimore Banner via AP)

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with one of the bridge’s supports, Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. (Kaitlin Newman/The Baltimore Banner via AP)

The National Transportation Safety Board said it is launching a team to investigate the bridge collapse and will hold a media briefing later Tuesday.

Maryland state Sen. Johnny Ray Salling, who is from the area, says the bridge plays a vital role in not only transportation, but also commerce.

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with a support Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. The major bridge in Baltimore snapped and collapsed after a container ship rammed into it early Tuesday, and several vehicles fell into the river below. Rescuers were searching for multiple people in the water. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark)

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with a support Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark)

“Losing this bridge will devastate the entire area, as well as the entire East Coast,” said Salling, a Republican.

Highway signs as far south as Virginia are warning drivers of delays associated with the closure of the bridge.

Synergy Marine Group — which owns and manages the ship, called the Dali — confirmed the vessel hit a pillar of the bridge at about 1:30 a.m. while in control of one or more pilots, who are local specialists who help navigate vessels safely into ports.

It said all crew members, including the two pilots on board, were accounted for and there were no reports of any injuries.

As the sun rose Tuesday, jagged remnants of the bridge were illuminated jutting up from the waters surface. The on-ramp ended abruptly where the span once began.

Danish shipping giant Maersk said it had chartered the vessel, which was carrying its customers’ cargo. No Maersk crew and personnel were on board.

The collapse caused Maersk share at the Nasdaq Copenhagen to plummet 2% in early Tuesday trading.

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with a support Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. (WJLA via AP)

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with a support Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. (WJLA via AP)

From 1960 to 2015, there have been 35 major bridge collapses worldwide due to ship or barge collision, with a total of 342 people killed, according to a 2018 report from the World Association for Waterborne Transport Infrastructure.

Eighteen of those collapses happened in the United States. Here’s a few notable ones:

BIG BAYOU CANOT: 47 DEAD

Sept. 22, 1993: Barges being pushed by a towboat in dense fog hit and displaced the Big Bayou Canot railroad bridge near Mobile, Alabama. Minutes later, an Amtrak train with 220 people aboard reached the displaced bridge and derailed, killing 47 people and injuring 103 people.

SUNSHINE SKYWAY BRIDGE: 35 DEAD

May 9, 1980: The 609-foot freighter Summit Venture was navigating through the narrow, winding shipping channel of Florida’s Tampa Bay when a sudden, blinding squall knocked out the ship’s radar. The ship sheared off a support of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, dropping a 1,400-foot section of concrete roadway during the morning rush hour. Seven vehicles, including a bus with 26 aboard, fell 150 feet into the water. Thirty-five people died.

Traffic streams over the rebuilt Sunshine Skyway Bridge on Wednesday, July 21, 2021, in St. Petersburg, Fla.. (Douglas R. Clifford/Tampa Bay Times via AP)

Traffic streams over the rebuilt Sunshine Skyway Bridge on Wednesday, July 21, 2021, in St. Petersburg, Fla.. (Douglas R. Clifford/Tampa Bay Times via AP)

EADS BRIDGE: 50 INJURED

April 14, 1998: The Anne Holly tow traveling through the St. Louis Harbor rammed into the center span of the Eads Bridge. Eight barges broke away. Three of them hit a permanently moored gambling vessel below the bridge. Fifty people suffered minor injuries.

▶ Read more: A list of major bridge collapses caused by ship or barge collisions

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul said she reached out to Moore and offered any assistance New York can provide. Hochul said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” that New York’s harbor “stands ready to assist, any way we can continue the flow of commerce so it’s not disrupted.”

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks at a press conference regarding the proliferation of illegal cannabis stores, Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2024, in New York. 
(AP Photo/Stefan Jeremiah)

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul speaks at a press conference regarding the proliferation of illegal cannabis stores, Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2024, in New York. 
(AP Photo/Stefan Jeremiah)

President Joe Biden walks to his motorcade after departing Air Force One, Wednesday March 20, 2024, on arrival at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, in Dallas. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

President Joe Biden walks to his motorcade after departing Air Force One, Wednesday March 20, 2024, on arrival at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, in Dallas. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

The President has been briefed on the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore and the ongoing search and rescue efforts. He will continue to receive updates from his team throughout the day.

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore is also on site at the bridge, per the governor’s spokesman.

Maryland Transportation Secretary Paul Wiedefeld said the FBI was on scene, but terrorism is not suspected. “It’s an open investigation but there’s nothing that points to that in any direction,” he said.

Wiedefeld said there was a crew working on the bridge doing “concrete deck repair” at the time of the collapse. He said officials are investigating how many workers were there.

In the meantime, vessel traffic into and out of the Port of Baltimore is suspended until further notice, but the port is still open for trucks, he said.

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with a support Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. The major bridge in Baltimore snapped and collapsed after a container ship rammed into it early Tuesday, and several vehicles fell into the river below. Rescuers were searching for multiple people in the water. (WJLA via AP)

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with a support Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. The major bridge in Baltimore snapped and collapsed after a container ship rammed into it early Tuesday, and several vehicles fell into the river below. Rescuers were searching for multiple people in the water. (WJLA via AP)

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with a support Tuesday, March 26, 2024 in Baltimore. The major bridge in Baltimore snapped and collapsed after a container ship rammed into it early Tuesday, and several vehicles fell into the river below. Rescuers were searching for multiple people in the water. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark)

Baltimore’s Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse is shown early morning, Tuesday, March 26, 2024 from Riviera Beach, Md. A container ship rammed into a major bridge in Baltimore early Tuesday, causing it to snap in a few places and plunge into the river below. Several vehicles fell into the chilly waters, and rescuers were initially searching for at least seven people. (AP Photo/Nathan Ellgren)

In 2001, a freight train carrying hazardous materials derailed in a tunnel in downtown Baltimore and caught fire, spewing black smoke into surrounding neighborhoods and forcing officials to temporarily close all major roads into the city.

Synergy Marine Group — which manages the ship called the Dali — confirmed the vessel hit a pillar of the bridge at about 1:30 a.m. while in control of one or more pilots, who are local specialists who help navigate vessels safely into ports. The ship is owned by Grace Ocean Private Ltd.

It said all crew members, including the pilots, were accounted for and there are no reports of any injuries.

The Dali was headed from Baltimore to Colombo, Sri Lanka, and flying under a Singapore flag, according to data from Marine Traffic. The container ship is about 985 feet (300 meters) long and about 157 feet (48 meters) wide, according to the website.

Correction: This post has been corrected to show that Grace Ocean Private owns the ship, not Synergy Marine Group.

The temperature was about 47 degrees Fahrenheit (8 degrees Celsius) in the early hours of Tuesday, according to a buoy that collects data for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Earlier, Kevin Cartwright, director of communications for the Baltimore Fire Department, told The Associated Press that several vehicles were on the bridge at the time, including one the size of a tractor-trailer truck.

He called the collapse a “developing mass casualty event,” though he didn’t know at the time how many people were affected.

Baltimore Fire Chief James Wallace says two people were pulled from the water after the bridge collapse.

He said one was in serious condition and the other was not seriously injured.

Wallace said authorities “may be looking for upwards of seven people” but he said that number could change.

Mayor Brandon M. Scott and Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski Jr. posted that emergency personnel were responding and rescue efforts were underway.

“All lanes closed both directions for incident on I-695 Key Bridge. Traffic is being detoured,” the Maryland Transportation Authority posted on X.

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with a support Tuesday, March 26, 2024, in Baltimore. The major bridge in Baltimore snapped and collapsed after a container ship rammed into it early Tuesday, and several vehicles fell into the river below. Rescuers were searching for multiple people in the water. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark)

Parts of the Francis Scott Key Bridge remain after a container ship collided with a support Tuesday, March 26, 2024, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark)

But Cartwright also said it’s too early to know how many people were affected. He called the collapse a “developing mass casualty event.”

He added that some cargo appeared to be dangling from the bridge, which spans the Patapsco River, a vital artery that along with the Port of Baltimore is a hub for shipping on the East Coast.

A vessel by that name was headed from Baltimore to Colombo , Sri Lanka, as its final destination, according to Marine Traffic and Vessel Finder.

The ship was flying under a Singapore flag, WTOP radio station reported, citing Petty Officer Matthew West from the Coast Guard in Baltimore.

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  1. How to Structure an Essay

    The basics of essay structure. There are two main things to keep in mind when working on your essay structure: making sure to include the right information in each part, and deciding how you'll organize the information within the body. Parts of an essay. The three parts that make up all essays are described in the table below.

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    Revised on July 23, 2023. An essay outline is a way of planning the structure of your essay before you start writing. It involves writing quick summary sentences or phrases for every point you will cover in each paragraph, giving you a picture of how your argument will unfold. You'll sometimes be asked to submit an essay outline as a separate ...

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    Parts of an essay. An impactful, well-structured essay comes down to three important parts: the introduction, body, and conclusion. 1. The introduction sets the stage for your essay and is typically a paragraph long. It should grab the reader's attention and give them a clear idea of what your essay will be about.

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    Body—An essay includes body paragraphs, which develop the main idea (thesis or claim) of the essay. An effective body paragraph should: Work together with the other body paragraphs to create a clear, cohesive paper (clarity and coherence can be achieved through the use of transitions). Conclusion—An essay ends with a brief conclusion, which ...

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    How to Write the Main Body of an Essay in 5 Steps. 1. Analyze the thesis statement to identify three subjects or ideas in it. An effective thesis will touch on several subjects or ideas, including ...

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    An essay consists of three basic parts: Introduction. Body. Conclusion. The essay itself usually has no section headings. Only the title page, author declaration and reference list are written as headings, along with, for example, appendices. Check any task instructions, and your course or unit handbook, for further details.

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    Part I: The Introduction. An introduction is usually the first paragraph of your academic essay. If you're writing a long essay, you might need 2 or 3 paragraphs to introduce your topic to your reader. A good introduction does 2 things: Gets the reader's attention. You can get a reader's attention by telling a story, providing a statistic ...

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  19. Baltimore key bridge collapse live updates: 2 bodies recovered

    Here's what to know: Victims: At least eight people went into the water.Two were rescued but the other six, part of a construction crew that had been filling potholes on the bridge, are missing and presumed dead.; Investigation: The cargo ship, called Dali, lost power and issued a mayday call shortly before it rammed the bridge. The U.S. Coast Guard boarded the vessel Wednesday to collect ...