Published: Mon, August 20, 2018
Markets | By Jeffery Armstrong

Italy bridge collapse: Three more bodies found under the rubble

Italy bridge collapse: Three more bodies found under the rubble

Italy held a state funeral service yesterday to commemorate dozens of people killed in Genoa's bridge disaster, as some outraged relatives vowed to shun official ceremonies and rescuers pulled more bodies from the wreckage.

A family of three - two parents and their nine-year-old daughter - were found overnight in their Hyundai vehicle which had been crushed by a concrete block, the ANSA news agency reported.

Officials put the official death toll at 43, after the remains of Italian-Jamaican family of three - including their nine-year-old daughter - were retrieved from their auto.

The company's boss Giovanni Castellucci said it would take eight months to build a new steel bridge in place of what was left of the viaduct.

Speaking after the funeral, top Autostrade executives voiced profound sadness for the victims and said the company would set up a fund of about $780 million for their families.

Between 10 and 20 people may still be missing under the rubble, Genoa's chief prosecutor has told reporters.

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Several angry families rebuffed the offer of a state funeral and the cardinal of Naples was merciless Friday in his condemnation of negligence by Italian officials.

Autostrade per l'Italia, which runs almost half of Italy's motorway network, has set aside €500m (£448m) to rebuild the structure and aid the port city in its recovery from the disaster.

Doctors had described him as the most severely injured of the survivors of Tuesday's collapse of the Morandi Bridge, a key artery in Genoa. The event will be led by the city's archbishop, Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, and attended by President Sergio Mattarella and Conte.

A view of the collapsed Morandi highway bridge, in Genoa, Italy, Aug. 17, 2018.

Shares in the parent company of Autostrade per l'Italia which runs the highway plunged more than 30% in the days after the collapse but were recovering slightly on Friday as investors said government threats to revoke its concessions might be political rhetoric rather than a likely outcome.

The collapse has prompted fears over other ageing infrastructure in Italy and overseas, with Bulgaria announcing Thursday a plan to renovate more than 200 bridges while France has said one in three of national road bridges are in need of fix.

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Demanding "credible compensation" for what it claims is culpability, the government plans to strip Autostrade of all its lucrative contracts, totalling 3,020km (1,870m) of Italy's 7,000km-long motorway network.

Players of the city's two soccer teams, Genoa and Sampdoria, sat among the crowd, having cancelled matches this weekend in sign of respect. They included four people from France, three from Chile, two from Albania, two from Romania, two from Jamaica and one each from Colombia and Peru.

The cause of the collapse is under investigation.

The Morandi viaduct dates from the 1960s and was riddled with structural problems for decades, leading to expensive maintenance and severe criticism from engineering experts.

Autostrade is controlled by infrastructure group Atlantia, in turn controlled by Italy's Benetton family.

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