On May the sixth last year, a disastrous earthquake struck the Friuli region of Italy.?
1976 Library Film GVs Rescue work in progress after earthquake in Friuli region, Italy (MUTE) (3 shots)
GV Coffins being carried into cemetery and placed on ground (MUTE)
CU Women crying (MUTE)
GV PAN FROM Priest conducting service TO coffins and mourners (MUTE) (2 shots)
GV Damaged rooftops and landscape in background
GV Damaged buildings and car driving along road
GVs Church being repaired in Gemona town (3 shots)
GV PAN Damaged buildings in Gemona town square and earth moving equipment
GVs PAN Wrecked buildings (2 shots)
GV PAN FROM Wrecked building TO prefabricated house
GV Man leaving house and walking towards tractor
GV PAN Tents and wooden houses
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: On May the sixth last year, a disastrous earthquake struck the Friuli region of Italy. Four months later, another earthquake hit. Deaths were minimal in the second quake, but it pushed the people almost beyond the limits of man's ability to withstand inexplicable punishment. They left in tens of thousands and the region became desolate. Twelve months after the first disaster, the region's recovery is only slowly progressing.
SYNOPSIS: The first earthquake struck - and large parts of Friuli were destroyed The towns of Gemona, Osoppo, Maiano and Buia were among those hardest hit.
Nine hundred and sixty people died. Thousands more were injured, and estimates of homeless ranged up to estimates of homeless ranged up to 150-thousand. Those who survived carried the burden of savage losses.
Italian country people are close to the land and its vagaries. They're a tough people who know the hardship of wresting a living from a demanding nature. Rebuilding began with hope for the future. The facade of Gemona's II Duomo church survived, seemingly miraculously - adding fuel to a deeply religious people's belief in redemption and rebirth. But four months later the second earthquake struck during an early winter. Forty thousand homeless living in tents were swamped in a recurrence of misery. Almost rebuilt buildings were destroyed again. Hopes for the future were dashed to the ground. Only four people died in the second earthquake but those struggling to rebuild their .....lives were convinced they were victims of a malign fate and they left in tens of thousands - many forever.
The slow application of aid to the area channelled through an unwieldy bureaucracy has added to the people's sometimes angry reaction to their predicament. It's estimated that 430 million dollars have been spent on aid for the region, including contributions from 15 overseas countries, the most generous of which comes from Canada. Despite the efforts, regeneration of the area is still decades away.