Four young men are among the 39 dead after bridge collapsed in Italy
The tragedy in Genoa strikes young men on their way to a holiday in France
On the 14th of August 2018 a highway bridge, in the northern port of Genoa crashed to the ground 45 meters below, dragging with it 35 cars and several trucks.
The current toll counts 39 mortal victims - including three children aged eight, 12 and 13 - with many more injured and missing.
As the dust settles on the Morandi bridge tragedy, the drama becomes more poignant, as details about the victims come to light. Among the dead were four young men who might have been alive today, if they had decided to fly, rather than drive to their holiday in France, reported Daily Mail.
"The disaster 'could have been avoided."
Luigi Di Maio, Daily Mail, 15th of August 2018.
Matteo Bentornati, Giovanni Battiloro, Gerardo Esposito and Antonio Stanzione were due to fly to Nice, but decided at the last minute to drive to France instead. Their decision would have fatal consequences, as the car they were traveling in was on the bridge when it collapsed.
The four young men were to spend their vacation traveling from to Nice and Barcelona but decided to initiate their road trip in Genova.
Battiloro, a freelance videographer in his 20s, contacted his parents at half an hour before the collapse telling them they were entering Genoa.
Read more about the Morandi bridge tragedy on our Twitter account @amomama_usa.
Like the other victims of the disaster, these are lives interrupted by what experts now say was a predictable - and avoidable - tragedy.
The Morandi bridge was built in 1967 and has been a maintenance nightmare for Genovese authorities ever since. Several alerts had been raised as to the bridge's stability, but the government had dismissed them as 'fairy story' and stated that repairs were a waste of money.
Genoa bridge collapse – pictures from the scene https://t.co/0Tq0gsKLzF— The Guardian (@guardian) August 14, 2018
A 2013 project to improve Genoa's highways - including the bridge - was vetoed and the proponents were said to have "an embarrassing lack of critical sense."
Hindsight is 20/20 vision, and the Italian Government is now under fire for the gross neglect of a deteriorated structure which led to the tragic death of 39 people.
Some repair work was carried out on the bridge in 2016, but as it is now apparent fell short of what was needed to make the structure safe.
The Italian people are asking for answers and as responsibility for the neglect that led to the collapse of the bridge is attributed, political heads will roll. Sadly, it will be too late for the victims and their grieving families.
This tragedy brings to mind the similarly dramatic crash of a bridge that was being built in Florida and crashed on a highway. Here too the collapse was attributed to faulty construction.