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Italian man crushed to death by falling cheese wheels

By Agence France-Presse Published Aug 08, 2023 9:43 am

An Italian man has been crushed to death under thousands of vast wheels of a Parmesan-style hard cheese, which weigh around 40 kilograms each, firefighters said Monday, Aug. 7.

Giacomo Chiapparini, 74, was buried under the cheeses when a shelf broke in his warehouse in the northern Lombardy region on Sunday, Aug. 6, creating a domino effect that brought down thousands of wheels, firefighter Antonio Dusi from Bergamo told AFP.

Rescuers "had to move the cheeses and the shelves by hand," Dusi said, adding that it "took about 12 hours" to finally find Chiapparini.

The warehouse, located in the small town of Romano di Lombardia near Bergamo, contained a total of 25,000 wheels of Grana Padano, a hard cheese that resembles Parmesan and is very popular in Italy.

Chiapparini had been checking on the ripening wheels, which were stored on metal shelves, the highest of which stood at 10 meters (33 feet). (AFP)