Italy’s hospitals at risk in earthquake-prone regions: 4.5 magnitude quake strikes northern Italy Posted on June 9, 2012

Saturday, June 9, 2012
By Paul Martin
June 9, 2012

ITALY – Italian hospitals are old and at risk of suffering severe damage in the event of an earthquake. Around 15 percent of the country’s hospitals were constructed before 1900, or which 74, or 9 percent, were built before 1800, according to data from the Italian Civil Protection agency, obtained by Adnkronos Health. “The oldest hospitals are considered at seismic risk,” said Giuseppe Paradiso, an engineer with Bari-based Gedi di Altamura construction firm. He said the type of cement used puts the structure at risk in the case of an earthquake because of “non-existing regulations. You built without thinking about the territory” he said. Italy is one of the world’s most seismic countries. A pair of earthquakes last month killed 25 people and caused around 5 billion euros in damage. More than 300 people perished when a quake struck the central Abruzzo region in April 2009. “The older buildings were built with the seismic norms of the time. But today you need to make important changes to be in line with new regulations,” said Daniela Pedrini, president of the Italian Society of Health Architecture and Engineering. Ironically, northern Italy was hit was another 4.5 magnitude earthquake today. The earthquake struck at a depth of 14.5 km (9.0 miles) and the epicenter was 82 km (50 miles) NNE of Venice, Italy and 473 km (293 miles) N of ROME, Italy. It appears the seismic unrest in northern Italy is now diffusing across the region. –Adnkronos TEP

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