QUAKES ROCK ITALY
Posted on 10/31/2016 | About Italy
Almost 8,000 people have sought assistance from Italy's Civil Protection agency and are being housed in hotels and shelters following Sunday's 6.6 quake, the strongest to hit the country in 36 years. The agency said early Monday that it was expecting to assist about 3,000 more residents overnight.
The agency's figures do not include the many who are sleeping in their own tents, cars and campers, or who have found their own lodging elsewhere.
The Sunday morning quake with a magnitude of 6.6 was centred in the mountainous area in central Italy that straddles Marche and Umbria.
No one was killed or seriously injured, possibly because a pair of powerful jolts last week had prompted many people to leave their homes.
The Civil Protection agency also is still housing about 1,100 people who were left homeless after the Aug. 24 quake in the same area that killed nearly 300 people.
An Italian seismologist says the quakes in central Italy were foreshocks to the powerful 6.6 temblor on Sunday, and that more significant quakes can be expected.
Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has vowed that Italy will rebuild the homes, churches and other structures destroyed in the country's latest earthquake.
He said the financial resources will be found to restore essential elements of the national identity.
The earthquake forced the temporary closure of some of Rome's most important tourist sites.
The Vatican's St. Paul Outside the Walls basilica was closed for several hours on Sunday after some plaster fell, but was later reopened.
Vatican firefighters inspected St. Peter's Basilica and the Vatican's other basilicas but found no hazards.
The presidential palace also was closed so authorities could check for damage.
Rome Mayor Virginia Raggi cancelled visits to City Hall as a precautionary measure.
Being respectful in Rome
Romans regularly interact with foreigners and tourists; it shouldn’t be hard to find friendly help provided you know some Italian. As for most every place in Italy, just be polite and you won’t have much trouble.
If you hit someone with your luggage or shoulder while walking on a street, say “sorry” (Mi scusi): despite being very busy, Rome is not London or New York and going ahead is considered bad behaviour, while a little apology will be satisfactory.
In buses or trains, let older people have your seat if there’s no space available. The gesture will be appreciated. Romans, and Italians as well, are very chaotic while in a queue, and often “clump” without any particular order: It’s considered unpolite, but they do it anyway. Be careful while driving, as Romans often drive frantically and bend the rules to cope with the heavy traffic.
If you are a young lady, you may get “shoutouts” or wolf whistles. Don’t take offense to it, don’t react to it either. Italian men are a nice bunch and when they see an attractive lady – they call it. So if this happens to you, just stick your nose up and walk by. They are not trying to harm you.