Italy avalanche death toll rises to 12 as three bodies found

Reuters News
Posted: Jan 24, 2017 4:09 AM

FARINDOLA, Italy (Reuters) - Rescuers working through the night pulled three more bodies from the wreck of a hotel in central Italy that was razed by an avalanche last week, bringing the death toll to 12, the national fire brigade said on Tuesday.

Eleven people so far have been rescued from in and around the hotel in the Gran Sasso national park, some of them surviving for two days under ice and rubble.

But 17 people are still missing after a wall of snow crashed into the four-storey building last Wednesday, hours after earthquakes shook the region.

The three latest victims found were men but they still have not been identified, officials said.

A Russian Ham Sandwich
Derek Hunter

The first funerals are due to be held later on Tuesday.

Prosecutors in nearby Pescara have opened an investigation into the avalanche.

(Reporting by Sasa Kavic and Roberto Mignucci in Farindola and Isla Binnie in Rome)