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August 24, 2016

Devastating Quake Rocks Central Italy Overnight; Local Mayor Says, "The Countryside Disappeared"

No forewarning, and the quake struck in the dead of night, at 3:22 a.m.

ROME — At least 73 people were killed and dozens more were missing or feared dead Wednesday after a magnitude-6.2 earthquake and a series of aftershocks struck several towns in central Italy, toppling scores of buildings, according to Italy’s civil protection agency.

Hardest hit were towns in the regions of Umbria, Lazio and Marche some 80 to 100 miles northeast of Rome....

Earlier, the Italian news agency ANSA reported at least 35 were killed in the town of Amatrice, 11 in Accumoli, near Rieti, and 17 in the province of Ascoli Piceno, which includes Pescara del Tronto.

Much of city center of Amatrice was covered with metal and rock debris that collapsed in the initial quake and aftershocks. Resident of this picturesque medieval town of around 3,000 people gathered in the piazzas, dazed by the quake and fearful of more temblors....

In some towns, rescue teams alternated bulldozers with bare hands to dig through piles of rubble looking for claw through piles of rubble for possible survivors as authorities warned the death toll is likely to rise.

I saw one official say the number of missing was "undefined" -- an ominous sort of understatement.



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posted by Ace at 05:00 PM

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