Firefighters have told reporters that at least 35 people are dead and tens more injured in a motorway bridge collapse in Genoa.

A section of the giant Morandi motorway bridge, located in an industrial area in the west of the city, collapsed shortly before 12pm on Tuesday, with tens feared dead and dozens injured in what Italy's transport minister said was an "immense tragedy."

Unofficial reports from firefighters at the scene have put the death toll at "at least" 35, with a ten year old child among the victims.

Italy's Interior Minister Matteo Salvini said Tuesday that "around 30" people have been killed.

"Unfortunately there are around 30 dead and many injured in a serious condition," Salvini told reporters in the Sicilian city of Catania.

The collapse, which saw a vast stretch of the A10 freeway tumble on to railway lines in the northern port city, came as the bridge was undergoing maintenance work and as the Liguria region, where Genoa is situated, experienced torrential rainfall.

The Italian fire service said that the bridge, collapsed at around noon (1000 GMT).

"Apocalyptic scene"

"The scene is truly apocalyptic, it seems like a bomb has hit this important artery which connects Piedmont and Lombardy to the eastern part of Liguria," said La Repubblica's Matteo Pucciarelli, who was filming at the scene.

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Rescuers scouring through the wreckage, strewn among shrubland and train tracks, said there were "dozens" of victims, while images from the scene showed an entire carriageway plunged to the ground. 

Cars and trucks were tangled in the rubble and nearby buildings damaged by vast chunks of concrete, according to an AFP photographer at the scene.

A fire service spokesperson told AFP that the bridge had mostly fallen on rail tracks 100 metres (yards) below and that "cars and trucks" had fallen with the rubble.

"Firefighters are working together and teams of rescuers and police sniffer dogs have been mobilised," emergency services said on Twitter.


A cell phone video taken by a bystander and obtained by La Republicca captured the moment of the collapse.

"Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God," the man behind the camera shouts repeatedly, before saying "I feel sick."

Below shows a birds eye view from a helicopter of the the collapse bridge and shows the damage done.

Italy's far-right interior minister Matteo Salvini said he was following events in Genoa "up to the minute" and thanked the emergency services for their swift response. 


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