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Dhaka     Friday   03 February 2023

Italy declares state of emergency

News Desk || risingbd.com

Published: 13:01, 28 November 2022  
Italy declares state of emergency

Italy declared a state of emergency on the southern island of Ischia on Sunday following a landslide that killed at least seven people and left several others missing.

A wave of mud and debris crashed through the small town of Casamicciola Terme on Saturday morning, engulfing at least one house and sweeping cars down to the sea, local media and emergency services said.

“The toll of victims from the landslide in Casamicciola has risen to seven dead, while five are missing,” Naples city prefect Claudio Palomba announced late Sunday. 

A first tranche of two million euros ($2 million) of relief funds was released at the end of an emergency cabinet meeting, which declared the state of emergency, said Minister for Civil Protection Nello Musumeci.

Italian media had earlier reported that four bodies had been found by Sunday afternoon.

More than 200 rescuers were still searching for missing people, while hundreds of volunteers, up to their knees in mud, were busy cleaning the town’s streets.

The rescue effort had been hampered by rain and high winds, which also delayed ferries bringing reinforcements from the mainland.

Interior Minister Matteo Piantedosi had earlier warned there were people trapped in the mud, saying it was a “very serious” situation.

In the worst-affected area of the town, at least 30 families were trapped in their homes without water or electricity, with mud and debris blocking the road, ANSA news agency reported.

Officials had said they expected to evacuate and find temporary homes for between 150 and 200 people.

Local authorities called on Ischia residents to stay inside to avoid hindering the rescue operation.

Casamicciola Terme was hit by an earthquake in 2017, in which two people died. It was completely destroyed by a much more powerful tremor at the end of the 19th century.

The devastation in Ischia comes just weeks after 11 people died in heavy rain and flooding in the central Italian region of Marche._Agencies

Dhaka/AI