Italy declares year-long state of emergency after bridge disaster

14 2018 in Genoa shows a section of a giant motorway bridge that collapsed earlier injuring several people.- Rescuers scouring through the wreckage after part of a viaduct of the A10 freeway collapsed said there were

14 2018 in Genoa shows a section of a giant motorway bridge that collapsed earlier injuring several people.- Rescuers scouring through the wreckage after part of a viaduct of the A10 freeway collapsed said there were"tens of

Italian rescue workers toiled for a third day Thursday in hopes of finding survivors trapped under the rubble of a collapsed highway bridge in the northern port city of Genoa.

"We were unlucky last night, we did not find anyone".

The number of cars on the collapsed section of the bridge - and the number of people that were in them - is still unclear to those working on the ground, Chief of Fire Services Emmanuel Gissi told CNN. "Then our personnel will try to see if there are any positive signs".

"We employed the companies and institutes that are world leaders in testing and inspecting based on the best global practices", the company said, adding that it spends more than $1.15 billion per year on road security and maintenance. Sixteen people were injured.

In Paris, France's foreign ministry said three French nationals were among the dead.

Rescuers searching through the wreckage, strewn among shrubland and train tracks, said there were "dozens" of victims, as rescue helicopters winched survivors on stretchers from the ruined bridge.

Transport Minister Danilo Toninelli said he had begun a process to strip Autostrade of its concession and demanded top managers resign.

As cranes moved in to shift lorry-size chunks of broken concrete, public shock and grief turned to anger over the state of the 1.2km-long bridge, completed in 1967 and overhauled two years ago. "Autostrade should have done maintenance and didn't do it", he said.

But when Atlantia shares re-opened after an hour's delay on Thursday, they were down 24.4 percent at 17.79 euros after the government suggested that it could revoke Autostrade's operating licence for the motorway.

It warned that the government would have to refund the group the value of the contract, which runs until at least 2038.

The tragedy has focused anger on the structural problems that have dogged the decades old Morandi bridge and the private sector firm Autostrade per l'Italia, which is now in charge of operating and maintaining swathes of the country's motorways.

Deputy premier Luigi Di Maio, head of the 5-Star Movement party, told reporters in Genoa that the statement was "shameful".

Capello, a former Italy Under-20 worldwide, fell from the bridge in his vehicle as it crumbled, but survived.

Valentina Galbusera, 43, a doctor, told La Stampa: "The bridge fell in front of me, not even 20m away, I avoided the collapse by only a couple of seconds". The driver of the green truck apparently had to hit his brakes because of the passing auto and was able to stop in time, he added. "Then I got out of the auto and started running".

Mehdi Kashani, an associate professor in structural mechanics at the University of Southampton in the United Kingdom, said pressure from "dynamic loads", such as heavy traffic or wind, could have resulted in "fatigue damage" in the bridge's parts. Three children were among those killed, Salvini said.

Serious questions are being raised about the state of fix of the Genoa bridge that collapsed, with the city council being told in 2012 it could fall down in 10 years.

The flyover of the A10 motorway, named after the architect who designed it, spanned railway lines, buildings and the Polcevera stream around 45 metres (over 140 feet) below.

The bridge has been riddled with structural problems since its construction, which has led to expensive maintenance and severe criticism from engineering experts.

"We must not allow another tragedy like this to happen again".

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