VIDEO: Three killed, six missing after ship crashes into Italian port tower

The collapsed control tower is pictured at Genoa's port harbour May 8, 2013. REUTERS/Alessandro Garofalo
The collapsed control tower at Genoa’s port harbor Wednesday morning. Credit: Alessandro Garofalo/Reuters

Three people were killed and six are missing after a container ship crashed into a control tower in the northern Italian port city of Genoa late Tuesday.

The tower, which was more than 160 feet high and looked much like the ones common at airports, collapsed after being struck by the prow of the ship, the Jolly Nero.

Two of the dead were Coast Guard officials and the third was a pilot for the port, Coast Guard spokesman Filippo Marini said. “We are continuing the search for the missing,” he said.

The accident happened as staff were changing shifts, so more people than normal were in the tower.

“It’s very difficult to explain how this could have happened because the ship should not have been where it was,” the head of the Genoa Port Authority, Luigi Merlo, told local newspaper il Secolo XIX.

Three people were believed to have been trapped in the lift of the control tower and may have fallen into the sea.

Television pictures early Wednesday showed that the only thing left where the tower had stood was a badly leaning metal-framed stairway. Divers from the fire department were shown in the water searching for bodies.

The cause of the crash was unclear. It occurred at about 11 p.m. GMT in calm conditions as the Jolly Nero, owned by local fleet operator Ignazio Messina and Co., was maneuvering out of the port with the assistance of tugboats, under the control of two pilots.

“A thing like this has never happened; we are devastated,” said Stefano Messina, one of the directors of the family-owned operator, who spoke in tears near the crash site to a local TV channel after the accident.

The Jolly Nero is a 781-foot ship with a gross tonnage of 40,594 tonnes, according to the company’s website.

Prosecutors boarded the vessel and have opened an investigation into the accident, according to daily il Secolo XIX.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Gunther from 'Friends' talks Central Perk

We spoke with Gunther (James Michael Tyler) at the preview for new pop-up Central Perk, based on the cafe in "Friends."

Local

Central Perk opens in SoHo

Central Perk, of "Friends" fame, is giving out free coffee in SoHo through Oct. 18.

National

Beer sponsor Anheuser-Busch reproaches NFL over domestic abuse

Anheuser-Busch chastised the NFL for its handling of domestic violence cases, making it the first major advertiser to put pressure on the league.

Local

Sen. Krueger dishes on prospect of legal marijuana…

New Yorkers may see the legalization of recreational marijuana use as early as 2015 if State Senator Liz Krueger (D) gets her way. The Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act will…

Music

FREEMAN makes Freeman a free man from Ween

For nearly 30 years, Aaron Freeman was known endearingly to his listeners as Gene Ween. But with "FREEMAN," he makes it clear that he's gone somewhere else.

Television

'Outlander' recap: Season 1, Episode 6: 'The Garrison…

Whipping, punching, kicking and a marriage contract. "Outlander" is not for the faint of heart this week with "The Garrison Commander."

The Word

The Word: Hey girl, it's a girl for…

It's a girl for Ryan Gosling and Eva Mendes, who reportedly welcomed a daughter last Friday, according to Us Weekly. The super-private couple managed to…

Television

TV watch list, Tuesday, Sept. 16: 'New Girl,'…

Check out the season premiere of "New Girl," as Jess competes with Jessica Biel for a guy's attentions.

MLB

5 top contenders for NL Rookie of the…

The outing rekindled award talk for deGrom, who appears to hold the top spot for NL Rookie of the Year honors. Metro breaks down a few other contenders.

College

College football Top 25 poll (AP rankings)

College football Top 25 poll (AP rankings)

NFL

Tom Coughlin says Giants 'beat themselves' against Cardinals

Head coach Tom Coughlin, who had a day to cool off and reflect, still sounded like he had a gnawing feeling in his gut.

NFL

Marty Mornhinweg accepts blame for Jets timeout fiasco

Jets fans looking for a scapegoat for Sunday’s timeout fiasco found a willing party on Monday: Marty Mornhinweg.

Style

Rachel Zoe: New York Fashion Week Spring 15

Rachel Zoe goes 'Glam bohemia' for Spring.

Food

Where to find SweeTango apples

Introduced in 2009, SweeTango — a hybrid of Honeycrisp and Zestar — is a sweet apple with plenty of crunch.

Style

London Fashion Week recap

London Fashion week gets in on the action with politics, heritage and summertime living.

Food

Padma Lakshmi's recipe for green mango curry

Padma Lakshmi shares her recipe for green mango curry in UNICEF's new book, "UNICHEF."