Italian bridge collapse survivor says it came down "like flour"

GENOA, Italy — More bodies were recovered Wednesday from the site of a highway bridge collapse. At least 39 people were killed, prompting the prime minister to declare a state of emergency as the search for victims continues.

Valentina Galbusera knows now how very close she came to plunging over that bridge, saying she would have died. The mother of two said the bridge started shaking violently, then the giant A-frame tower in front of her collapsed "like flour."

"The cone yes, fell down like flour," Galbusera said. "It was like also the Twin Towers."

She abandoned her car and ran for her life.

On Wednesday, new fears that more of the bridge might plummet prompted authorities to evacuate hundreds more residents. New photos have emerged appearing to show just how badly the bridge had deteriorated before collapsing.

When she got home Tuesday night, Galbusera hugged her two young daughters like she never had before.

"All my family and all my friends," she said.

The fire chief heading the search told CBS News there is still good reason to hope to find survivors because the huge slabs of concrete from the bridge offer more air space than, say, flattened buildings.

italy bridge

The collapsed Morandi Bridge is seen in the Italian port city of Genoa, Italy, on August 14, 2018.

Stefano Rellandini / REUTERS