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30 possibly dead after avalanche following four earthquakes hits hotel in central Italy

30 possibly dead after avalanche following four earthquakes hits hotel in central ItalyAn Italian official says a hotel in an earthquake-hit zone of central Italy has been buried by an avalanche, with reports of dead.

The avalanche was as a result of four earthquakes on Wednesday in the area. It covered the three-story hotel near the Gran Sasso mountain, in the Abruzzo region, and it's believed approximately 30 people were inside when hotel was struck.

It took rescuers a long time to access the hotel as the roads leading to it were blocked with snow. The only way to get to it was on skis overnight.

The president of the Pescara provincial wrote on Facebook on Thursday that there were 20 guests at the hotel when it was covered by the avalanche, about 45 kilometers (30 miles) from the coastal city of Pescara.

It's now believed that there was seven staff working at the hotel at the time and potentially more guests. So far, two people have been rescued and brought to safety.
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