Published: Wed, August 15, 2018
Finance | By Cynthia Curry

Former Cagliari goalkeeper Davide Capello survives 30m fall at Genoa bridge collapse

Former Cagliari goalkeeper Davide Capello survives 30m fall at Genoa bridge collapse

The motorway operator said work was being done to enforce the bridge's foundation at the time of the collapse and restructuring work was reported in 2016.

While that remained the official death toll, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said from Genoa on August 14 evening that the number would rise.

Italy's transport minister said on Wednesday he had begun a process to strip Autostrade of its concession and he demanded top Autostrade managers resign.

The collapsed section of the Morandi Bridge in Genoa.

Huge slabs of reinforced concrete plunged onto two warehouses, train tracks and a riverbed.

Speaking to the faithful in St. Peter's Square, Francis expressed his "spiritual closeness" to the victims, the injured and their families, and the hundreds of local people who were forced to evacuate their homes in the area.

Roberto Robbiano, his wife Ersilia Piccinino and their seven-year-old son Samuele are believed to have died when their auto plummeted to the ground after a section of the Morandi viaduct collapsed during torrential rain on Tuesday.

"We are still trying to extract survivors from the rubble", Genoa police official Alessandra Bucci said.

The designer of the bridge Riccardo Morandi was said to be "an engineer with great insight, but lacking in practical calculations", according to Antonio Brencich, a structural engineer who lectures at Genoa University.

"We should ask ourselves whether respecting these (budget) limits is more important than the safety of Italian citizens".

"If they are not able manage our highways, the state will do it", Toninelli said.

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The condition of the bridge, and its ability to sustain large increases in both the intensity and weight of traffic over the years, have been a focus of public debate since Tuesday's collapse, when an 80-meter span gave way at lunchtime as cars packed with holidaymakers as well as trucks streamed across it.

Notwithstanding the importance of a road that sees 25 million vehicles pass along it every year, the demolition of the bridge was being studied as far back as 2009.

"Suddenly the bridge came down with everything it was carrying. It was really an apocalyptic scene, I couldn't believe my eyes".

Some 300 firefighters were working in the wreckage, using sniffer dogs to try to locate survivors, along with 400 police. "We can't live with infrastructure built in the 1950s and 1960s".

Italy's minister of transportation and infrastructure, Danilo Toninelli, from the populist 5-Star Movement, threatened in a Facebook post that the state, if necessary, would take direct control of the highway agency if it couldn't properly care for roads and bridge.

He was apparently referring to the bridge's concession-holder, Italian motorway firm Autostrade, a unit of Atlantia group.

"The collapse was unexpected and unpredictable".

Genoa's public prosecutor has already promised a criminal investigation into the tragedy, suggesting the collapse was the result of negligence.

He said there had been no indication that the bridge was risky.

In a statement late on Tuesday, Autostrade said it's "fully committed to evaluate the best solutions to rebuild the viaduct in the quickest possible time in a secure and efficient way".

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