ASHEVILLE, N.C. -- Authorities say an Asheville police officer died Tuesday after his cruiser plunged off a bridge.
Asheville Police Chief William Anderson said Officer Robert Bingaman died when his car ran off a bridge on Interstate 240 around 1 p.m. The car landed along Riverside Drive.
Bingaman was transported to Mission Hospital and was pronounced dead shortly after, officials said.
There was no one else in the cruiser and no one else was hurt. Anderson said he did not believe any other vehicles were involved, but could not say whether Bingaman was in pursuit or responding to another accident at the time.
“He was a great guy, did his job,” Anderson said. “He was like many of the men and women with the APD. He came to work, did his job and did it well.”
Bingaman was 37 and had been with the Asheville Police Department for six years.
Firefighters said it took some time to stabilize the police car, and they had to strap the back end of the vehicle to a bridge piling.
Ken Wilson, Division 13 Operations Engineer, told the Asheville Citizen-Times that the N.C. Department of Transportation will review the wreck to see if any structural changes should be made to the bridge’s guardrails. He could not immediately say what kind of impact the rails were designed to withstand.
Wilson said he was not aware of a car going off the bridge in his 29 years on the job in Asheville.