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15 August 2018

Italy’s Morandi Bridge collapses killing at least 35

First published15/08/2018

Investigators and rescuers in the northern Italian city of Genoa are scouring the wreckage of a cable stayed motorway bridge that collapsed, killing at least 35 people.

A tower collapsed and then a 209m section – the longest - plummeted to the river and train tracks below at around 11:30 during heavy rain, media sources said. One truck driver managed to stop only metres from the edge of the missing section of bridge.

"It was just after 11:30 when we saw lightning strike the bridge," an eyewitness was quoted as saying by Italy's Ansa news agency. "And we saw the bridge going down.”

The four-lane 1.1km Morandi Bridge, also known as the Polcevera viaduct, crosses the Polcevera River and rises 45m above local train tracks. It was opened in 1967 and named after its designer Riccardo Morandi. It is part of the A10 city toll motorway that connects Genoa to the Italian Riviera. One of the structure’s three 90m-high piers collapsed, according to one Genoa resident’s video footage of the event.

The BBC reported that shares in Atlantia, the toll road operator which runs much of the country's motorways, fell 6.3% after news of the collapse.

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