At least two dozen coffins holding human remains were left dangling in the air after a four-story cemetery building collapsed in Naples, Italy Monday.
The collapse was the second time a structure within Poggioreale cemetery — the oldest and largest cemetery in the southern Italian city — toppled this year, the Guardian reported.
Authorities closed down Poggioreale as they began to investigate the cause of the collapse of the marble building called the Resurrection.
“The collapse was preceded by a bang and a dense cloud of dust,” said Vincenzo Santagada, a Naples councillor with responsibility for cemeteries, according to the Guardian. “As an administration we are taking care of all the necessary formalities.”
No one was inside the graveyard at the time of the collapse because it happened after closing time, the outlet reported.
Local politicians and loved ones of those laid to rest in the burial niches blamed poor management and upkeep of the cemetery for the destruction.
In January, a building in another area of the cemetery collapsed, destroying 300 burial niches. An investigation into that disaster is ongoing.
Family members of the deceased held a protest demanding better from cemetery management Tuesday.
Politicians also condemned the conditions of the graveyards in the city.
“This is a critical and unacceptable situation,” regional councilor for the Eruopa Verde party Francesco Emilio Borrelli said in a statement. “For too many years, cemeteries in Naples have been mismanaged and left to fend for themselves, falling prey to swindlers and profiteers.”