Central Italy earthquake
The Civil Protection Department is coordinating the Central Italy earthquake emergency.
The state of emergency has been declared after the August 24 and then extended after the strong quakes occurred on October 26 and 30 and again after the four shocks of magnitude higher that 5 on January 18 and the exceptional snowfalls that affected Abruzzo, Lazio, Marche and Umbria
At 3.36 a.m. of August 24, 2016 a 5,9 magnitude earthquake hits Central Italy. Thousands of people are involved with many victims and damage on the territory. The Head of the Civil Protection Department immediately calls the Operational Committee that is gathered as standing committee in the premises of the Department.
From August 28 onwards, the Dicomac - Direction of command and control – established in Rieti, guarantees the coordination emergency management activities through assistance to population, damage survey on buildings, artistic and cultural heritage, search of alternative housing solutions and support to production activities.
On October 26 and 30 new violent shocks rock Central Italy, in particular between Umbria and Marche, already deeply affected by the August 24 quake. The October 26 event was featured by two strong quakes of 5.4 and 5.9 magnitude, and on Octoboer 30 a new strong quake causes new damage and collapses to buildings. Unlike after the August event, this time there are no victims, but the involved people are tens of thousands and even the number of damaged and collapsed buildings is higher.
On January 18, four earthquakes of magnitude higher of 5 hit again Lazio and Abruzzo regions. In particular, at 10.25 a 5.1 event is registered, followed by other strong quakes: the second at 11.14, of 5.5 magnitude, the third at 11.25, of 5.4 magnitude and then the fourth at 14.33 of 5 magnitude. When the earthquakes occurred, the System of civil protection was already operating on the territory also because it has been tackling, for a few days, the exceptional wave of bad weather that affected, among the others, Abruzzo, Lazio, Marche and Umbria regions.
Numerous and complex interventions were carried out: rescue, first aid and evacuation of people from isolated communities, restoration of traffic, infrastructures and essential services.
During the exceptional snowfalls, a few hours after the violent January 18 earthquakes, an avalanche crushed and destroyed the Rigopiano hotel, on the slopes of Gran Sasso, a few kilometres away from Farindola, in the province of Pescara. The search and rescue operations went on for eight days and nights, allowing to save nine lives, together with the two people who survived as they were outside the hotel during the avalanche. The January events caused 34 victims in total, of which 29 in the Rigopiano Hotel.