Scores Killed After Powerful Quake Hits Italy
AMATRICE, Italy — Rescue teams aided by sniffer dogs searched for survivors Thursday, more than 24 hours after a powerful earthquake reduced several central Italian towns to rubble and killed almost 250 people.
Helicopters buzzed overhead as crews used everything from heavy equipment to their bare hands to pick through collapsed buildings in search of anyone still alive in the ruins.
Thousands of displaced residents slept overnight in tents or school gyms and officials said 264 others had been hospitalized — but the exact number of dead and missing in Wednesday’s disaster remained unclear because the region’s population was swelled by tourists.
One of the worst-hit towns, Amatrice, was full for this weekend’s planned festival honoring its native bacon-and-tomato sauce dish — spaghetti all’ amatriciana.
Five bodies were pulled from the wreckage of a hotel late Wednesday but rescue work was suspended when conditions became too dangerous. Among those killed was an 11-year-old boy who had initially shown signs of life.
Elsewhere in the town, onlookers clapped and cheered as a young child was pulled from the rubble in a moment captured by La Repubblica newspaper.