Disasters & Accidents

Five quake survivors pulled from ruins more than week on

Istanbul, Turkey, Feb 15 (EFE).- Emergency workers in Turkey rescued five people from the rubble of collapsed buildings on Wednesday as recovery efforts entered their 10th day since twin earthquakes devastated the region as the death toll topped 40,000.

A woman and her two children were rescued alive at 1.00 pm GMT after spending 228 hours under the rubble of a building in the badly-hit city of Antakya.

An hour earlier in Kahramanmaras, near the epicenter of the powerful earthquakes, a 74-year-old woman was rescued against the odds.

Another woman was found alive Kahramanmaras after search teams heard her calls for help. A rescue worker told Hurriyet newspaper the 42-year-old woman was in good condition despite being trapped in the wreckage for 222 hours.

These five surprise rescues come after another woman, 77, was saved shortly before midnight in the city of Adiyaman.

Emergency workers told Efe that the low temperatures can in certain circumstances increase the survival chances of those trapped under the rubble as the concrete debris provides some level of insulation while survivors do not suffer from dehydration as quickly as they would in the summer heat.

The death toll from the 7.7-magnitude and 7.6-magnitude earthquakes that rocked the region in quick succession on February 6 rose to 35,418 in Turkey and over 5,000 in Syria, according to authorities.

Over the weekend, contractors were arrested on suspicion of negligence linked to toppled buildings in Turkey.

The arrests came after mounting criticism and anger towards Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government with citizens saying more could have been done to manage the disaster and save more lives.

The brewing anger could be pivotal in the looming May presidential elections where Erdogan will be seeking a third term.EFE


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