Italy quake: State of Emergency declared

Italy has declared a state of emergency in the regions worst hit by Wednesday’s earthquake as hopes of finding more survivors fade.
Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has pledged €50m (£42m) in funds for rebuilding.

At least 250 people are now known to have died and 365 were injured. Teams have continued to search the rubble of toppled buildings for a second night.
However, hundreds of aftershocks have hampered the efforts of the 5,000 rescuers.

In addition to the funds, Mr Renzi cancelled taxes for residents and announced a new initiative, “Italian Homes”, to tackle criticism over shoddy construction.

But he also said that it was “absurd” to think that Italy could build completely quake-proof buildings.

It follows criticism in the Italian press over building standards in high-risk areas. Some of the buildings that collapsed had recently been renovated.

Historic towns do not have to conform to anti-quake building regulations, which are also often not applied when new buildings are put up.

in the early hours of Wednesday, 100km (65 miles) north-east of Rome in mountainous central Italy.

The worst affected towns – Amatrice, Arquata, Accumoli and Pescara del Tronto – are usually sparsely populated but have been swelled by tourists visiting for summer, making estimates for the precise number missing difficult.

More than 200 people died in Amatrice alone, Ansa news agency reported.
At least three Britons died in the quake, a local official in Amatrice told the BBC. The Romanian government said 11 of its citizens were missing.

Source:BBC

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