CASAMICCIOLA, Italy, Nov. 10 (UPI) — The mudslide that struck a volcanic island Tuesday in the Gulf of Naples, burying a town, was like “the end of the world,” an official said.
A 15-year-old girl was dead on the island of Ischia, and an 11-year-old girl was missing, the Italian news agency ANSA said. The 15-year-old was a passenger in a bus that was swept out to sea.
Casamicciola, a port on the north end of the island, was inundated with mud flowing from Mount Epomeo, the highest of Ischia’s peaks. Mayor Vincenzo D’Ambrosio, who said he had just walked his daughter to school when the slide began, described it as being like “the end of the world.”
“A river of dirt and rocks flooded the entire town,” he said.
At least 20 people were injured, most of them suffering from bruises and fractures. One child was described as being in serious condition.
Because the roads into town were blocked, Casamicciola had to be evacuated by boat.
In October, a mudslide in Messina on the island of Sicily killed 37 people and forced hundreds from their homes. Officials blamed the death toll on illegal construction and inadequate flood prevention.
Copyright 2009 by United Press International