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4 Dead in Explosion at Hydropower Plant in Italy


Wed 10 Apr 2024 | 12:03 PM
Israa Farhan

An explosion on Tuesday at a hydropower station near Bologna in northern Italy led to fires and floods, resulting in the deaths of at least three workers and injuring five others seriously.

Francesco Notaro, head of the regional firefighting department, told Sky TG24 that the explosion caused the collapse of two levels of the underground structure, igniting fires and causing floods, while four other individuals remain missing.

The explosion occurred at a depth ranging from 30 to 60 meters (100 to 200 feet) below the water level at the Borgo hydropower station in the Apennine Mountains south of Bologna.

Attilio Fontana, the governor of Bologna, stated, "The explosion occurred during maintenance work on the electrical system, leading to the malfunction of one of the turbines."

Officials mentioned that search efforts are proceeding cautiously due to the risk of further collapses on the seventh and eighth levels underground, while the water submerged the ninth level. Divers were aiding in the search.

A circulating video showed smoke rising from beneath the ground at the power generation station located on the shores of Lake Suviana, belonging to the Enel energy company.

The Suviana Lake was created through the construction of a dam from 1928 to 1932 and is situated in a regional park at an altitude of 500 meters, about 70 kilometers southwest of Bologna.

Enel Green Power stated in a statement that no damage occurred to the dam.

Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni stated she was following the "horrific" news and expressed solidarity with the victims and their families.