Royal Oak Tribune

Quake toll rises to 116; rescuers finish searches

- By Andrew Wilks

ANKARA, TURKEY » The death toll in last week’s Aegean Sea earthquake rose to 116 on Wednesday as rescuers in the Turkish city of Izmir finished searching buildings that collapsed in the quake.

All but two of the victims were killed in Izmir, Turkey’s thirdlarge­st city. Two teenagers died on the Greek island of Samos, which lies south of the epicenter of Friday’s earthquake. The U.S. Geological Survey registered the quake’s magnitude at 7.0, although other agencies recorded it as less severe.

Mehmet Gulluoglu, head of Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency, said search and rescue operations had been completed at 17 buildings that fell in Izmir. The rescue operation has been roaring at full tilt since Friday, pulling 107 survivors from the rubble.

Of the 1,035 people injured in the quake, 137 remained hospitaliz­ed on Wednesday, the agency added.

Following a Cabinet meeting on Tuesday evening, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pledged not to give up until the final person was recovered. Rescuers’ spirits were raised Tuesday when they pulled a 3-year-old girl from the wreckage of her family home 91 hours after the quake.

The tremors were felt across western Turkey, including in Istanbul, as well as in the Greek capital of Athens. Some 1,700 aftershock­s followed, 45 of which were greater than 4.0 magnitude.

In Izmir, the quake reduced buildings to rubble or saw floors pancake in on themselves. Authoritie­s

have detained nine people, including contractor­s, for questionin­g over the collapse of six of the buildings.

Turkey has a mix of older buildings and new buildings make of cheap or illegal constructi­on that do not withstand earthquake­s well. Regulation­s have been tightened to strengthen or demolish older buildings, and urban renewal is underway in Turkish cities, but experts say it is not happening fast enough.

 ?? PHOTOS BY EMRAH GUREL — THE ASSOCIATED PRESS ?? A worker walks past as others demolish a building that was damaged at the Oct. 30 earthquake in Izmir, Turkey, Wednesday. Search and rescue operations for survivors had been completed Wednesday at several buildings that fell in the coastal city. More that a hundred people were killed and more that a thousand people were injured.
PHOTOS BY EMRAH GUREL — THE ASSOCIATED PRESS A worker walks past as others demolish a building that was damaged at the Oct. 30 earthquake in Izmir, Turkey, Wednesday. Search and rescue operations for survivors had been completed Wednesday at several buildings that fell in the coastal city. More that a hundred people were killed and more that a thousand people were injured.
 ??  ?? A member of rescue services takes a break during the search for survivors in the debris of a collapsed building destroyed in the earthquake in Izmir, Turkey.
A member of rescue services takes a break during the search for survivors in the debris of a collapsed building destroyed in the earthquake in Izmir, Turkey.
 ??  ?? A woman pauses at a basketball court where tents had been set up to accommodat­e people after becoming homeless due to the Oct. 30 earthquake in Izmir, Turkey.
A woman pauses at a basketball court where tents had been set up to accommodat­e people after becoming homeless due to the Oct. 30 earthquake in Izmir, Turkey.

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