Italy's government attacks Benetton family over Genoa bridge collapse

The viaduct gave way amid torrential rain

The viaduct gave way amid torrential rain

The EU has hit back at Italy's populist government over suggestions its policies are to blame for the Genoa bridge collapse.

Motorists, meanwhile, recounted miraculous escapes and the horror of seeing others plunge over the edge.

The highway bridge, in the northern port city, crashed to the ground without warning on Tuesday, with nearly 40 cars and trucks falling 45 metres with it.

Italy's Interior Minister Matteo Salvini (C) speaks to journalists as he visits the Morandi motorway bridge site one day after a section collapsed in Genoa, Aug. 15, 2018. At least two people were missing.

The Commission was responding to comments made by Salvini, the leader of the eurosceptic Northern League party and now Italy's highest profile politician, during a visit to Genoa on Tuesday.

"It's not possible that someone pays a toll to die", Di Maio said.

Genoa is a flood-prone city, and officials have warned that the debris from the collapse must be removed as soon as possible.

Montefusco, who grew up in Genoa, added: "It [the bridge] was a sort of jewel in Italian engineering, because at that time it was built with new engineering techniques".

While around a dozen apartment blocks under the shadow of the viaduct were largely spared the impact of the falling concrete, the Liguria regional government said some 632 people have been evacuated.

Transport Minister Danilo Toninelli called on Autostrade's leadership to resign, accusing the company of putting profits ahead of safety.

The Genoa Public Prosecutor's Office blamed "human error" for the collapse that killed 39 people and injured 24.

India lost its 'anmol ratna': PM Modi on Atal Bihari Vajpayee's death
The veteran politician had been largely out of political life since 2009 when he suffered a major stroke. Aarti Vij adds. "We pray to the God to make him healthy soon and bless him with a long life", he said.

At least six of the dead are foreigners - four French citizens and two Albanians.

Genoa's chief prosecutor, Francesco Cozzi, said 10-20 people were still missing. I don't know how my auto wasn't crushed.

The incident was the deadliest of its kind in Europe since 2001 and the latest in a string of bridge collapses in Italy. According to business daily Il Sole, improvement work would have involved two weight-bearing columns that support the bridge - including one that collapsed Tuesday.

The 1967 bridge, considered innovative in its time for its use of concrete around its cables, had always been due for an upgrade, especially since the structure saw more heavy traffic than its designers had envisioned. The next company would be held to "more stringent" rules for maintenance.

"Ever since the first decades [of its lifespan] the bridge has been subject to major maintenance works", he said, "with continuous costs from which we can foresee that in a few years, maintenance costs will have exceeded reconstruction costs".

Giuseppe Conte, the prime minister, arrived in Genoa on Tuesday night and was expected to be joined later by his deputy, Luigi Di Maio.

The government has rounded on Autostrade, saying it could revoke its concession as it had failed to ensure the viaduct's safety, though investigators have yet to identify the exact cause of the collapse.

A recent photo of the bridge that collapsed, sending cars plunging 150ft to the ground, highlighted the sorry state it was in. "But we don't know the reason", he said. "We opened our doors, took our son out of his vehicle seat", and then ran to a nearby tunnel.

Other images showed a green truck that had stopped on the bridge just metres short of the gaping hole in the bridge.

The alternative route adds kilometres - and time - to every journey.

Recommended News

  • John Elway offers misleading statement on Broncos pursuit of Colin Kaepernick

    John Elway offers misleading statement on Broncos pursuit of Colin Kaepernick

    Elway responded by saying Kaepernick " had his chance " to join the team but turned down a contract offer from Denver. Kelly entered training camp as the third quarterback on the roster behind 2016 first round selection Paxton Lynch .
    US President signs US$717 billion defense bill for FY2019

    US President signs US$717 billion defense bill for FY2019

    Each year, Congress passes a new National Defense Authorization Act to set military spending levels for the year ahead. That measure was seen as targeting China . "They've given me rundowns".
    Serena Williams and Kyle Edmund crash out in Cincinnati

    Serena Williams and Kyle Edmund crash out in Cincinnati

    Williams also was knocked out in her last tournament at San Jose two weeks ago after reaching the Wimbledon final. Two-time Cincinnati semi-finalist Milos Raonic advanced with a 6-3, 6-3 win over qualifier Dusan Lajovic.
  • ‘Carpool Karaoke’: Ariana Grande Must Be Carried, So James Corden Obliges

    ‘Carpool Karaoke’: Ariana Grande Must Be Carried, So James Corden Obliges

    Oh! And she also got a piggyback ride from James Corden into a California Starbucks where she ordered a grande coffee. We're not talking karaoke singing; we're talking full-fledged harmonies and Celine Dion impressions and rap verses.
    ESPN reportedly considering bringing back Chris Berman for Sunday NFL coverage

    ESPN reportedly considering bringing back Chris Berman for Sunday NFL coverage

    The effort to phase out Berman was led by ex-president John Skipper , who abruptly resigned from his position in December. Berman isn't technically retired, but after the 2016-2017 National Football League season, he accepted a reduced role.

    Fox News makes error in Aretha Franklin tribute video

    The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) said her music would inspire people for generations. The music world has had a few days to brace for the loss of arguably the greatest singer of all time, Aretha Franklin .
  • Storm Ernesto to unleash heavy rain this weekend

    Storm Ernesto to unleash heavy rain this weekend

    Bad weather is set to arrive in the country in the early hours of Sunday morning, but will only hit certain areas. The storm is due to hit the United Kingdom this weekend and will nearly certainly bring heavy wind and showers.
    Temper behaviour in South China Sea, Duterte tells China

    Temper behaviour in South China Sea, Duterte tells China

    That is wrong because those waters are what we would consider global sea. "You can not create an island. The new islands stand in close proximity to islands occupied by Vietnam, the Philippines and Taiwan.
    Tracking the QB responses to Jalen Ramsey's trash talk

    Tracking the QB responses to Jalen Ramsey's trash talk

    That tells me Shanahan left, went to San Francisco, got (Jimmy) Garoppolo, made Garoppolo this big thing. He hadn't even heard about what Ramsey had said until he was asked about it, according to Sal Capaccio .
  • Manchester City’s Kevin De Bruyne suffers knee injury in training

    Manchester City’s Kevin De Bruyne suffers knee injury in training

    He was also the star of the show for Belgium at the World Cup, netting the victor against Brazil in the quarterfinals. After that game, Guardiola can be seen lavishing praise on his side.
    Novak Djokovic makes winning start in Cincinnati as Murray falls in opener

    Novak Djokovic makes winning start in Cincinnati as Murray falls in opener

    And after losing the first set to two-time Wimbledon champion Kvitova, Williams showed similar form as she levelled the match. Williams, a 23-time Grand Slam victor and a former champion in Cincinnati, needed just 65 minutes to dispatch Gavrilova.
    Akshay Kumar's Gold Is About Hockey

    Akshay Kumar's Gold Is About Hockey

    It reportedly enjoyed an occupancy of around 40-45 per cent on the maiden day, which is above expectations. But Gold has beaten his highest opening day collections so far, that of Singh Is Bliing (Rs 16.98 crore ).

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.