HomeOutdoorsNewsAt Least 12 People Missing, Buildings Collapsed Amid Devastating Landslides

At Least 12 People Missing, Buildings Collapsed Amid Devastating Landslides

by Craig Garrett
(Photo by ELIANO IMPERATO/AFP via Getty Images)

On Saturday, as many as 12 people went missing on the south Italian island of Ischia after rainfall resulted in landslides. The body of a woman was discovered in the mud, Claudio Palomba, Naples prefect told reporters at a news conference. The rain wouldn’t let up, so the rescuers had to be careful as they used small bulldozers to search through the six to seven meters of mud and debris for survivors. More people came to help by ferry, including teams of sniffer dogs, NPR reports.

The power of the mudslide down the mountainside was enough to send cars flying off roads and buses into sea at Casamicciola. Officials stated that the island received nearly five inches of rain in only six hours. This makes it the heaviest rainfall in 20 years.

The streets were covered in debris and impassable, and mayors were urging people to stay home. Over 100 people were without power or water, and about 70 more were taking refuge in a community gymnasium.

Initially, Vice Premier Matteo Salvini said that eight people were confirmed dead. However, later the interior minister stated that no deaths had been confirmed but 10 to 12 people were missing. Interior Minister Matteo Piantedosi clarified the matter from an emergency command. enter in Rome. “The situation is very complicated and very serious because probably some of those people are under the mud,” Piantedosi explained.

At least 10 building has been lost due to landslides

At least 10 buildings have collapsed since the storms begain. One family with a newborn baby has been found and is receiving medical care, according to the Naples prefect.

The video from the island showed that small bulldozers were clearing roads. Meanwhile, residents used hoses in an attempt to get mud out of their homes. One man, who has been identified as Benjamin Iacono, told Sky TG24 that three shops adjacent to each other had been overwhelmed by mud and everything inside them had been ruined. He then went on to estimate the damage done at around 100,000 euros to 150,000 euros ($104,000 to $156,000).

Due to high winds, search and rescue efforts by firefighters and the Coast Guard were initially delayed. Boats and helicopters could not reach the island. The island, home to many mountains and a dense population, is well-known for its beautiful beaches and luxurious spas. A 4.0-magnitude earthquake struck the island in 2017, leaving two people dead and inflicting major damage to Casamicciola and Lacco Ameno.

“There are some difficulties in the rescue operations because the weather conditions are still very demanding, but we are sending vehicles both by sea and for air overflights … (this is) a very serious evolving situation that needs to be followed,” Piantedosi said.