By Nichola Jones, IFRC
At least two people are believed to have died and dozens injured following a magnitude 4 earthquake in the Bay of Naples.
Ischia island was the worst hit by the tremor which caused several buildings to collapse including a church and houses. Several people remain trapped under the rubble.
Specially trained local volunteers were on the scene in the aftermath of the quake, followed by extra teams from the mainland to support the rescue efforts.
Italian Red Cross spokesperson Tommaso Della Longa said: “Our volunteers from Ischia have been helping with the ongoing rescues and evacuations to Naples and we were able to send extra volunteer support from the mainland.
“It is a traumatic time for the community in Ischia – many people have seen their homes damaged and loved ones injured. The most important thing now is to make sure people are safe as the recovery begins.”
Experts from the Italian Red Cross headquarters are working alongside civil protection and emergency services in an operations centre in Rome which is coordinating the response. A public awareness campaign to provide people with advice on what to do in the event of a quake or aftershock is also underway.
Last night’s tremor came almost one year to the day that a 6.2 magnitude earthquake devastated parts of Central Italy and left almost 300 people dead on August 24 2016.
The Italian Red Cross has been working in those communities in Abruzzo, Marche and Umbria throughout the year as the recovery continues.