Genoa Bridge Collapse: Search for victims continues

Genoa bridge

Italian rescue workers have continued to search for possible survivors, using jackhammers and cranes to lift giant slabs of concrete from the Genoa highway bridge collapse.

At least 38 people were killed when the bridge collapsed on Tuesday.

As many as 20 people are still unaccounted for, Genoa’s chief prosecutor said.

A fire held up part of the operation in the early morning, sending up clouds of white smoke before being extinguished. A spark from metal-cutting equipment was thought to have caused the blaze that started in a warehouse under the ruined bridge

Chances of finding survivors appeared to be slim. Vehicles on the highway that links the port city to the French border plummeted 50 meters (165 feet) to the ground when a 200-metre (660-foot) stretch of the viaduct collapsed on Tuesday.

Firefighters, who are using sniffer dogs as well as heavy machinery, have not yet reached all the cars.

We are trying to find points where we can penetrate these incredibly heavy slabs. Then the earth-moving equipment moves in to create a passageway where the dogs can enter,” firefighter Stefano Zanut said at the scene.

Rescuers are hoping that the large chunks of debris may have created a “triangle of survival” when they fell, where someone could still be alive, he said.

Genoa bridge

Some 600 people have had to leave their apartments below the remaining spans of the bridge for fear of further collapse. The homes will be demolished as officials have deemed it would be too dangerous to leave them there.

The government has said alternative housing will be found, although it may take months to re-house everyone.

A state funeral for many of the victims will be held on Saturday at Genoa’s Exhibition and Trade Centre, led by the city’s archbishop, Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, and attended by President Sergio Mattarella and Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte.

Residents have blamed authorities and the company managing the bridge for the collapse saying they were negligent.

Some Millie’s are boycotting the state funeral in protest.