Three dead and others injured in Florence construction site collapse


At least three workers died and three were hospitalised with serious injuries after a slab collapsed at a construction site in the Italian city of Florence, local authorities said on Friday warning that the death toll was likely to rise.

The fire brigade wrote on social media platform X that the accident took place in the city's northwestern area, and was caused by the collapse of a slab in a prefabricated building.

"The confirmed dead are three...another two are still missing," said Monia Monni, the official in charge of civil protection in Tuscany, the region that encompasses Florence.

She told Reuters eight people were on the construction site at the time of the accident and said two of the three hospitalised workers were in a serious, but not life-threatening condition.

Previously, Eugenio Giani, the president of the Tuscany region, told SkyTg24 there was very little chance of finding more survivors under the rubble.

Accidents on work sites are fairly common in Italy, and trade unions routinely complain about inadequate working conditions on building sites and lack of checks by health and safety authorities.

Italy had 601 workplace deaths in 2021, the second-highest figure in the 27-member European Union after France, according to the bloc's statistics agency Eurostat.

Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni expressed her condolences to the families of the workers. "We are following the developments of the case and praying for the injured people and for those who are still missing," she said during an event in the southern region of Calabria."

The workers were building a supermarket for the Esselunga chain. The president of the company, Marina Caprotti, also expressed her grief and said all Esselunga stores in Florence would close in the afternoon "as a sign of mourning".

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