After a vertiginous fall of about forty meters in his white Volkswagen Tiguan, the shock of which was cushioned by tons of debris, Davide came out of the tragedy almost unscathed, apart from back and shoulder pain “which return from time to time”.
But he had to give up his passion, football. “I miss playing football. But I’m lucky to be a coach, which makes up for it a bit,” he told AFP at the Ruffinengo stadium in Savona (north-west), 50 km from Genoa. , where he went to spot young talent.
On the morning of August 14, 2018, the day of the disaster, Davide, who has worked for several years as a firefighter in Savona, was on his way to Genoa to renew his membership card at the Genoa football club where he trains young goalkeepers beginning.
“I went through the tunnel before the Morandi bridge. Then, halfway through the bridge, I heard a thud behind me and saw the road crumble, all the cars in front of me plunged into the void “, he recalls.
– “An eternity” –
“At a certain moment I felt propelled in the air and I fell with the whole bridge, with the nose of my car pointing downwards, at the time I really thought I was going to die”.
And then happened what he calls a “miracle”, because “there is no other explanation”. “A cloud of dust surrounded me when I landed inside a part of the bridge which covered me without flattening me”, as in an air bubble, “and accompanied me until down”.
When the car landed on the rubble piled up in the courtyard of a factory located under the bridge, “all the windows exploded”, but “the cabin remained intact”.
The fall “only lasted a few seconds but it seemed like an eternity to me”, confides Davide, who had to resort to a psychologist to overcome his trauma.
The young man remained stuck in the car for about twenty minutes, searching in vain for his mobile phone. But thanks to the Bluetooth screen of his SUV, he managed to warn his fellow firefighters, his parents and his girlfriend.
– “Unreal silence” –
“These were moments of panic, of terror. Then, when I heard the first voices of the rescuers, I mustered up my courage and managed to get out of the rear window and climb on the rubble”.
Around him, “there reigned an almost unreal silence”. “It was like a parallel reality, I was walking without understanding. I only understood what happened when I saw the collapsed bridge from further away.”
Hospitalized for a few days and in shock for a long time, he gradually resumed his work as a firefighter and started driving again. But it took him more than a year to take the new bridge, inaugurated in August 2020.
Will he attend the trial on the Morandi bridge drama which opens Thursday in Genoa? “No, certainly not. I prefer to move forward in life”.