At least 73 people are dead and hundreds more are still trapped under the rubble in central Italy, where a 6.2 magnitude earthquake flattened towns near Rome on Wednesday morning. Rescuers are fanning out through several small towns in a mountainous area around 100 miles (150 km) northeast of Rome, where the quake did the worst damage. Some of the more remote villages, perched amid rugged mountains, are among the worst hit.
The town that appeared to have suffered the most as the picture of the disaster became clearer was Amatrice, where almost all 2,500 inhabitants are now homeless and dozens are dead. Photographers in the town captured the destruction as the sun rose on Wednesday, a few hours after the quake, which struck at around 3:30am local time. Aerial images showed the staggering damage to nearby towns as well.
A handout picture made available by the Italian Fire Brigade shows an aerial view of collapsed and damaged houses in Amatrice (Photo via EPA)
Search and rescue teams and local people survey the rubble in Amatrice. (Photo by Massimo Percossi/EPA)
An injured woman is carried by rescuers amid the rubble of collapsed buildings in Amatrice (Photo by Massimo Percossi/EPA)
A mother embraces her son in Amatrice (Photo by Massimo Percossi/EPA)
A view of collapsed and damaged houses in the village of Arquata del Tronto (Photo by Angelo Carconi and Matteo Crocchioni/EPA)
Another view of the destruction in Amatrice (Photo by Massimo Percossi/EPA)
Another view of a destroyed mountain village (Photo by Matteo Crocchioni/EPA)
A man in front of the rubble in Amatrice (Photo by Massimo Percossi/EPA)
Another view of Amatrice (Photo by Fabrizio Di Nucci/VICE News)
Rescuers with the Italian Red Cross pulled out this man out of the rubble alive in Amatrice (Photo by Fabrizio Di Nucci/VICE News)