Container Ship Strikes Genoa Control Tower; Seven Reported Dead
Officials said seven are dead and two missing after the containership Jolly Nero crashed into a control tower in the Italian port of Genoa late Tuesday night.
Rescue workers continue to search the rubble for survivors while divers scour the surrounding waters.
The 240-meter ship collided with the 50-meter concrete and glass tower with approximately 13 people thought to be inside. The ship was exiting the port under tow of several tugboats and was on its way to Naples.
The cause of the accident still remains unclear, but officials said that mechanical failure is likely to blame for what happened.
The ship's captain is being investigated by prosecutors with a view to possible manslaughter charges, BBC reported.
Six of those killed have so far been identified, BBC said; two of them - Maurizio Potenza and Michele Robazza - were pilots for the port, while another three - Fratantonio Daniel, David Morella and Marco De Candussio - were coastguard officers and the sixth was Sergio Basso, who worked for a tugboat operator.
Four people were being treated for injuries, two of whom were in critical condition.
“There are no words to express the consternation and the deep grief for the workers victim of this tragedy and for their families,” the ship’s owner, Ignazio Messina & C., said in a news release.
“Messina Group is at total and unconditional disposal of all competent Authorities in the common effort to identify as quickly as possible the causes of a tragic accident, the release said. “[The accident] occurred during the usual operations of exit from the Port of Genoa that also Messina Line ships execute with regular frequency in the foreseen turning basin, assisted, as in the case of Jolly Nero, by the tug boats and with the pilot onboard.”
(Souces: BBC, Reuters and Staff Reports)