One of the worst events of Dundee’s history was the Tay Bridge Disaster, the collapse in December 1879 of the rail bridge spanning the Firth of Tay between the city of Dundee and the suburb of Wormit in Fife. The bridge was opened in May 1878; at over two miles long, it was celebrated as the longest bridge in the world at that time. Designed by Sir Thomas Bouch, it was viewed as one of the jewels of the modern industrial world. On the stormy evening of 28 December 1879 the centre of the bridge collapsed during a storm while a train was crossing, and 75 people fell to their death. It was later surmised that the collapse was due to a number of serious structural faults, and the disaster left Bouch a broken man. A new rail bridge, constructed close to the remains of the old one, was opened in 1887. The piers of the original bridge can still be seen in the river beside the main bridge – a poignant memorial to the night of the great gale of 1879.