MILAN: Italian deputy transport minister Edoardo Rixi says the number of victims in the Genoa highway bridge collapse has risen to at least 22 dead and eight injured.
Rixi told Sky TG24 that, as he was speaking, emergency response crews were recovering a body from an automobile that was suspended on a central part of the bridge.
Rixi said it is “the biggest tragedy involving a bridge of this importance in Europe in the last decades.”
He said that at least 20 vehicles on the bridge had plunged in the collapse, and that also people in buildings below the bridge were in some way involved. That included the trash management offices for the city of Genoa.
French President Emmanuel Macron has offered Italy his country’s help after a bridge collapsed in the Italian city of Genoa.
The president’s office said that Macron, who is currently staying at a presidential residence in southern France, had a phone call with Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte.
In French and Italian, Macron wrote on Twitter: “Our thoughts go to the victims, their relatives and all the Italian people. France stands by Italy in that tragedy and is ready to provide all necessary support.”
The disaster occurred on a major highway that connects Italy to France and other vacation resorts.
The Italian news agency ANSA citing the Interior Ministry says that 11 people are confirmed dead in the collapse of a highway bridge in the port city of Genoa.
ANSA reported Tuesday that five people are injured and in serious condition. The Interior Ministry press office could not immediately confirm the fatalities.
An official with Italian firefighters, Amalia Tedeschi, told RAI state TV that some 20 vehicles, including cars and trucks, had been involved in the collapse. She confirmed that two people had been extracted alive from vehicles, with injuries.
Tedeschi said that sniffer dogs are at work in the rubble looking for more injured and victims. In addition, heavy equipment was being moved in so they could lift pieces of the bridge.
Tedeschi said the part of the bridge that collapsed was about 80 meters (yards) in length. Media reports had earlier put it at 200 meters.