MILAN: Firefighters in Italy freed a seven-month-old baby and his two older brothers from rubble early Tuesday following a 4.3-magnitude quake on the resort island of Ischia off Naples.
Firefighters dug with their bare hands to get the eldest brother, Ciro, about two hours after they freed his younger brother, Mattias, and eight hours after they removed the infant Pasquale. Firefighters announced the final success with a tweet: “Even Ciro is saved!” TV cameras recorded cheers going up.
Pasquale was wearing a white onesie and appeared alert when rescuers pulled him out of the collapsed structure in hardest-hit Casamicciola at around 4 a.m.
The children’s father told RAI state television that boys were in a bedroom when the quake struck, while he and his wife were elsewhere in the house. The mother, who Italian media say is heavily pregnant, managed to escape through a window while rescuers helped the father.
Firefighter spokesperson Luca Cari said earlier they maintained voice contact with the older boys during the complex rescue operation to create an opening through the collapsed ceiling. The boys had been given bottles of water and a flashlight.
At least two people were killed in the quake that struck just before 9 p.m. local time Monday. Another 39 were injured and some 2,600 were left homeless.
The quake was measured at magnitude 4.3 by the United States Geological Survey, up from initial readings of 4.0.