The condition of the five-year-old Israeli boy who was the sole survivor of the cable car crash in Italy last weekend has continued to progress.
“Eitan is now awake and conscious in the intensive care unit, speaking with his aunt and looking around,” said a spokesman for Turin’s Regina Margherita hospital.
“In the next few days he will be taken out of intensive care and transferred to a hospital ward.”
However, doctors have said that recovery will be difficult and protracted, as he suffers from thoracic and abdominal trauma and fractured limbs.
Eitan has been in critical condition since the disaster, in which fourteen people were killed, including his parents, younger brother and great-grandparents.
Meanwhile, Reuters reported on Thursday that three men arrested in the case who allegedly knew there were technical problems with the cabins, but kept them running for financial reasons, prosecutors said in a legal filing.
The owner of the cable-car company and two employees were aware the system was not working properly and deliberately placed fork-shaped clamps on the emergency brakes to prevent them from constantly kicking in, prosecutors said.
“The charges are extremely serious due to the deliberate intention to circumvent the security system for reasons of profit, totally disregarding basic safety rules,” said the detention order drawn up by the prosecutors and seen by Reuters.
Lawyers for the three men contacted by Reuters made no immediate comment.
The first funerals of some of the victims took place in both Italy and Israel on Thursday. The bodies of the five Israeli victims – a young couple, their child and their grandparents – were sent home on Wednesday.