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Two dead in Italy earthquake
Ischia, Italy ©marktristan

Two dead in Italy earthquake

22/08/17Environment

At least two people have died and several are trapped under rubble after a 4.0 magnitude earthquake struck the island of Ischia off the coast of Naples.

Around 40 people are said to have been injured as they ran out on to the streets when the quake hit the Italian island just before 9pm on Monday (21 August).

The island, which is highly popular with tourists, has a population of about 50,000.

Andrea Petrella, a spokeswoman for the local chamber of commerce, said: “I tried to go to Maio Square where they told me there was damage. But in the dark it is difficult.”

An eyewitness wrote on Twitter: ‘A horrible experience, everything was shaking, plunged into darkness, houses were collapsing… a nightmare.’

Another wrote: ‘I was on the couch watching TV. Blackout, shaking, something fell on my head. I scream, my mother grabs me and we ran outside.’

One elderly woman was reportedly killed by debris falling from a church, while another was found in the rubble of collapsed building.

Rescuers are trying to locate two children, thought to be aged seven and four. Local media say they are trapped under a bed but are able to communicate with rescue workers by telephone.

Their father and two women, one of whom is pregnant, were saved, as was their seven-month-old baby brother, who was pulled alive from the rubble at around 04:00 CET.

There have been at least 14 aftershocks following the quake, causing many residents to spend the night out in the open.

Earthquakes are common in Italy, as it straddles the Eurasian and African tectonic plates.

Pan European Networks Ltd