Rescuers using drones continued on Tuesday to search for the 13 people still missing and possible survivors after Sunday’s disaster on the Marmolada glacier. The deadly avalanche of ice and rock in northern Italy killed at least seven people and injured another eight, several seriously, after a massive chunk of the glacier broke away. It is being blamed in large part on rising temperatures that are melting glaciers.
After rain hampered the search Monday, sunny weather on Tuesday allowed helicopters to bring more rescue teams up to the site on the Marmolada glacier, east of Bolzano in the Dolomites mountain range.
On Monday Premier Mario Draghi visited the area of the disaster and linked it to global heating.
“This is a drama that certainly has unforeseen elements, but certainly also depends on the deterioration of the environment and the climate situation,” he said at the Dolomites resort town of Canazei.
“The government must reflect on what has happened and take measures so that what happened has a low probability of happening (again) and, indeed, will be averted”. Experts have linked the current heat wave that has hit Italy to the disaster, saying it has made the glacier unstable, with temperatures reaching 10°C at 3,000m above sea level, something that was unthinkable only a few years ago so early in summer.
Scientists say more frequent and intense heat waves are a result of climate change caused by human activity.