Thursday, January 19, 2017

Search for survivors after avalanche hits Italian hotel

A huge avalanche swallowed up a luxury mountain hotel in central Italy after a series of strong earthquakes rocked the area, burying up to 30 people under tonnes of snow and debris.

Italian media said three bodies had been retrieved from the site.

  • Rescue workers declined to comment on the reports, but said they had yet to find any sign of life.

The gabled peaks of parts of the roof and a row of windows were the only sections of the four-storey Hotel Rigopiano still visible after the wall of snow smashed into the four-star spa resort early yesterday evening.

Local authorities said about 30 people had been in the building at the time, including two children, but more than 20 hours later, only a couple of survivors had been found – two men who had been outside when the disaster struck.

"The hotel is almost completely destroyed. We've called out but we've heard no replies, no voices," said Antonio Crocetta, a member of the Alpine Rescue squad who was on the scene.

"We're digging and looking for people," he told Reuters by phone from the isolated location in the Gran Sasso mountain range in the central Abruzzo region.

  • Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni called for national unity, saying Italy was caught in an "unprecedented vice" of earthquakes and heavy snows simultaneously.

The rescue operation was hampered by metres of snow which have fallen on the Gran Sasso in recent days.

Drifts made snow as deep as five metres in some places and snow ploughs struggled to cut a path up winding mountain roads............

No comments:

Post a Comment

Only News

EL News

Blog Widget by LinkWithin