Turkey: 35 Dead, 45 Pulled from Wreckage after Earthquake
Thirty-eight hours after a magnitude 6.8 earthquake hit Turkey’s Elazığ province, rescue teams are continuing to search for survivors trapped in the rubble of collapsed buildings. Turkey’s disaster authority said on Sunday that 45 people have been rescued so far and the death toll has risen to 35. More than 1,600 people were injured. Since the earthquake struck on Friday night at 7:55 pm local time, more than 700 aftershocks have hit the region. Seventy-six buildings collapsed and almost 650 buildings were heavily damaged by the tremblor. Authorities are warning residents not to return to their homes until it has been verified that the structures are safe. Temperatures overnight dropped down to -4° Celsius (24.8°F), state media said. Thousands of emergency workers from outside the province, and hundreds of volunteers, are aiding in the rescue efforts and in caring for displaced residents. Turkey has a history of earthquakes, including a 7.6-magnitude quake centered near Izmit, about 56 miles (90 kilometers) southeast of Istanbul, that killed 17,000 people in 1999.