Collapse on a supermarket construction site in Florence, three workers dead, three injured and two missing

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Collapse on a supermarket construction site in Florence, three workers dead, three injured and two missing
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Massacre of workers in Florence in the collapse of a construction site for the construction of an Esselunga supermarket in the area of the former military bakery: three confirmed dead, one of whom was identified in the evening, two missing, three injured, two seriously, but not life threatening. The president of the Tuscany Region Eugenio Giani himself reports on the conditions of the latter, according to which the toll of the tragedy is destined to worsen: the hopes of finding the other workers not yet identified under the rubble alive are “reduced to a sliver”. However, the searches continue unabated and have been underway since this morning: they will continue throughout the night.

One of the victims is Luigi Coclite, a 60-year-old originally from Teramo and resident in Collesalvetti, in the province of Livorno. According to what we learned, the man's wife came to the scene of the tragedy this morning, but was sent far away so as not to meet the numerous journalists present. The three injured people admitted to the Careggi hospital are, however, all three originally from Romania: they are 37, 48 and 51 years old.
The collapse occurred shortly before 9 this morning, presumably at 8.52, accompanied by a roar and a cloud of dust, hitting a team of eight workers: “At a certain point a large reinforced concrete beam on the fourth floor of the supermarket, which had already been placed before, collapsed on one side. It generated a series of collapses and people's bodies ended up in the basement. The operations are also very difficult “due to the risk of “cascade collapses”. Numerous teams of USAR firefighters were involved in the search, including dogs, drones, excavators and cranes from the construction site.

Condolence was expressed by the head of state, Sergio Mattarella, in a phone call to the Florentine mayor, Dario Nardella who, on an institutional trip to the Holy Land, interrupted the mission to return to Florence. Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni said she was following the evolution of the situation “with apprehension”. Marina Caprotti, president of Esselunga expressed “deep condolences and closeness to the families of the victims of the very serious accident. We are shocked by what happened. As a sign of mourning, the Esselunga shops in the city of Florence will be closed in the afternoon”.

The Florence prosecutor's office has opened a case, currently without suspects, for negligent collapse and manslaughter. The construction site is under seizure. The ASL technicians listened to construction site staff. The chief prosecutor of Florence Filippo Spiezia carried out an inspection lasting approximately two and a half hours. With him also the emergency prosecutor Francesco Sottosanti, who had already carried out a long inspection this morning. The hypothesis is that a beam or a pylon tooth gave way.

From the sign displayed at the limits of the construction site, the company carrying out the works appears to be Aep Attivi Edilizie Pavesi, based in Pieve del Cairo (Pavia). However, according to what we learned from a union source, the construction of the new supermarket is involving over 30 subcontracted companies . The company commissioning the works would be La Villata spa, real estate investment and development company, based in Milan.
According to what was also reported by Giani, who shuttled between the construction site and the nearby Careggi hospital where the three injured people are hospitalized, there were over 50 people working on the construction site this morning. The complex of the former military bakery, between via Ponte di Mezzo and via Mariti, had been abandoned since the 1970s, and Esselunga started the works in July 2021. The project includes over 5,200 m2 of public use areas divided between a garden and a tree-lined car park.

The unions have proclaimed a two-hour regional strike , and a nationwide abstention from work has been called for the 21st. There were also moments of tension at a protest organized by CGIL, CISL and UIL of Florence in front of the prefecture in the afternoon due to a protest against trade unionists by demonstrators attributable to the antagonist area and to the anarchist area collectives. Mourning has been proclaimed for tomorrow throughout Tuscany. Numerous events scheduled in the Florentine area have been postponed and not only at the weekend, from Chinese New Year parades to the presentation of candidates for the next municipal elections.

“In 2023 there were a thousand deaths at work and these accidents are often produced by the subcontracting system and the logic of lowest-cost procurement. However, I want to remind you that it was this Government that changed the procurement code and reintroduced cascade subcontracting” . The leader of the CGIL, Maurizio Landini, said this when commenting on the workplace accident in Florence. “There needs to be an immediate reaction and I also think that it is necessary to arrive at a general initiative next week, which I will also propose to the other unions, because it is no longer acceptable to continue dying at work.”

“The words of Maurizio Landini, who commented on the accident at work in Florence, also blaming the new procurement code, are disgusting : the secretary of the CGIL ignores that the new rules were desired by Europe, so much so that Italy was at risk infringement, and that they have nothing to do with the tragedy. The ideological envy of the CGIL does not stop even in the face of tragedies”. Thus a note from the League .

To know more ANSA Agency There were over a thousand deaths at work in 2023, almost three per day – News – Ansa.it In total, 1,041 reports of fatal accidents in the workplace were received by Inail in twelve months, in all of 2023. Almost three deaths a day although down compared to last year and previous years up to pre-Covid (ANSA)
To know more ANSA Agency From Thyssen to Brandizzo, an endless trail of white deaths – News – Ansa.it Today's accident in Florence is just the latest in an endless series of fatal workplace accidents which have occurred on construction sites. (HANDLE)

Meloni, condolences for the victims

“On behalf of myself and the Government, I express my condolences for the victims of the collapse of a beam which occurred on a construction site in Florence. I am following the evolution of the situation with apprehension and I thank those who are taking part in the search for the missing and in the rescue operations for the injured. Our deepest condolences to the families affected by this terrible tragedy.” Thus the Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni on social media.

Nardella, Mattarella expressed his condolences

“I sincerely thank President Mattarella for expressing his closeness and condolences to me on the phone for the tragedy at the Florence construction site. I have proclaimed city mourning for tomorrow with the suspension of all events. I will return from the Holy Land on the first available flight early.” The mayor of Florence Dario Nardella wrote this on X regarding the tragedy in via Mariti in Florence.

The president of the Tuscany Region: 'Regional mourning proclaimed tomorrow'

“With deep sorrow, I express my condolences on behalf of all of Tuscany to the families of the victims of the accident on the construction site in Tuscany. I have proclaimed regional mourning for tomorrow to join us all in the pain of the families. Sincere thanks to the forces of order and to all the rescuers for their extraordinary commitment”. The president of the Tuscany Region, Eugenio Giani, wrote it on social media.

General strike CGIL-CISL-UIL Tuscany

Regional general strike in Tuscany today, in the last two hours of the shift: it was called by CGIL, CISL and UIL after the serious accident that occurred this morning in Florence on the construction site of a new supermarket. “We appeal to institutions, the world of business and politics, control bodies, no more deaths at work!”, say the unions in a joint note.

“Today in Tuscany we sent a first signal as the regional CGIL by proclaiming an immediate two-hour strike at the end of the shift in all workplaces and I know that there have already been spontaneous stoppages by the RSU in various factories”. The leader of the CGIL, Maurizio Landini, said this today in Pisa, commenting on the serious workplace accident that occurred in Florence. “We have another commitment in Lucca – he added – but based on the situation in Florence which is constantly evolving I will evaluate whether to go to Florence”.

“In 2023 there were a thousand deaths at work and these accidents are often produced by the subcontracting system and the logic of lowest-cost procurement. However, I want to remind you that it was this Government that changed the procurement code and reintroduced cascade subcontracting” Landini said. “There needs to be an immediate reaction and I also think that it is necessary to arrive at a general initiative next week, which I will also propose to the other unions, because it is no longer acceptable to continue dying at work.”

Anmil: 'The collapse of Florence is not a fatality'

“How much is the life of a worker worth and how much are we willing to accept that entire families cry and find themselves in serious difficulty due to the lack of safety in the workplace, which should be constitutionally guaranteed?” This was stated by the president of Anmil, Zoello Forni, regarding the accident that occurred on a construction site in Florence where the collapse of a reinforced concrete beam caused a chain failure within the construction site of a new Esselunga supermarket.

Dying at work today is still unacceptable and shameful – declares the vice president of the Anmil Foundation 'Support them immediately' Paola Batignani, widow of Alessandro Rosi, who died in 2019 in the shed of a steel mill in Cremona where a construction site had been set up for work of maintenance and was crushed by a beam – but above all what is serious is that we are not capable of respecting the rules and means of protection that could save the lives of hundreds of workers, instead leaving unscrupulous entrepreneurs to lose nothing and their responsibility ends with a plea bargain and no one really pays for these unjust and avoidable deaths.”

“With our 250,000 members we will immediately launch an appeal to all Italians, so that these problems are not only talked about in a few short news stories or by telling repetitively about some individual cases, as if they were extraordinary events and not the numbers of a daily massacre which sees at least 4 deaths per day”, concludes Forni.

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