Monday, 20 Jan 2020

Girl killed in French bridge collapse; several people missing

A 15-year-old girl was killed after a suspension bridge over the river Tarn in south-west France collapsed yesterday, causing a car, a truck and possibly a third vehicle to plunge into the water, the local authorities said. Four people were rescued but several were feared missing after the collapse of the bridge linking the towns of Mirepoix-sur-Tarn and Bessieres, 30km north of Toulouse, said the fire service and local security chief Etienne Guyot. Television images showed a car bonnet sticking out of the fast-flowing waters and emergency service helicopters circling overhead. The girl’s body was pulled from the water, Toulouse prosecutor Dominique Alzeari said at the scene. Her mother was rescued by onlookers. Over 60 rescue workers, including divers, and 40 police officers were taking part in the search for survivors, Mr Guyot told reporters, adding there were “probably several missing”. Among those feared missing were the truck driver and the driver of a potential third vehicle, he said, adding that witnesses reported seeing a van on the bridge. The bridge, which had a load limit of 19 tonnes, dated to the 1930s, and was “regularly checked”, he said.

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