Sicily bridge collapses within days of opening

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The bridge (not the one pictured) collapsed within ten days of opening. Road photo: Shutterstock
12:47 CET+01:00
In a further embarrassment to Italy over its public works, a €13 million viaduct in Sicily collapsed within ten days of opening.

There are hundreds of unfinished public projects around Italy, so those behind the Scorciavacche viaduct, which lies on a stretch of highway between Palermo and Agrigento, had reason to celebrate when it opened on December 23rd - three months ahead of schedule.

But less than two weeks later the bridge had to be closed after part of it collapsed, Corriere reported.

Anas, the company responsible for public roadworks and maintenance, said an "abnormal subsidence" had occurred.

Four people reported minor injuries but fortunately there have been no major ones. No vehicles were travelling across the bridge when it crumbled as it was closed to traffic on December 31st.

But the incident has riled Italy's leaders, with premier Matteo Renzi saying in a message on Twitter on Sunday that those responsible "will pay everything".

Prosecutors have opened investigation.

Transport Minister Maurizio Lupi said the incident was "unheard of and unacceptable", adding that he has asked Anas for a detailed report on the project.

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"Somebody gave the green light but the work was not done properly."

This is not the first time this has happened in Sicily.

In July last year, the Petrusa bridge, which was part of a highway in the region near Agrigento, collapsed while three cars were travelling across it. 

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