Rome : Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte on Wednesday declared a 12-month state of emergency after a section of a motorway bridge recently collapsed in Genoa that claimed 39 lives.

Conte further announced that he allocated five million euros for the smooth facilitation of search and rescue operations. He added his administration would withdraw the concession from Autostrade, the private company responsible for the maintenance of the Morandi Bridge that collapsed on Tuesday. Conte was quoted by CNN as saying, “These are tragedies that are unacceptable in modern society.”

Although rescue operations were on till Wednesday evening, the hopes of finding more survivors in the mishap are now appearing to be dim. Fire services chief Emanuele Gissi told CNN that the rescue workers were working with care and caution amid concerns of the stability of Morandi Bridge.

Initially, the authorities blamed heavy thunderstorms for the mishap, but Conte clarified the investigators were working on the reason for the “structural failure” of the bridge.

(To download our E-paper please click here. The publishers permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

Free Press Journal