Giovedì, 18 Ottobre 2018

L'Aquila quake experts made 'ineffective' risk evaluation


L'Aquila, January 18 - Seven Italian scientists and
officials were convicted of multiple manslaughter over the 2009
L'Aquila earthquake for making "ineffective" statements that
reassured the population and ignored the real level of risk, the
judge presiding over the trial said in the explanation of his
verdict published Friday.
''The affirmations made concerning the evaluation of the
risks linked to the seismic activity in the L'Aquila area turned
out to be absolutely approximate, generic and ineffective,''
wrote Marco Billi.
In October the judge sentenced the former second-in-command
of Italy's civil protection agency and six others - all then
members of Italy's so-called Commission on Major Risks - to six
years in prison over the 6.3-magnitude earthquake on April 6,
2009 in the area of the central Abruzzo city of L'Aquila that
killed over 300 people and left tens of thousands homeless.
The trial focused on a commission meeting of March 31, 2009
in L'Aquila to examine rumblings that had frightened residents
for months.
In a memo, the experts concluded that it was "unlikely"
that there would be a major quake, though it stressed that the
possibility could not be ruled out.
Billi ruled that inadequate risk assessment and the
resulting reassurances led many residents to remain inside on
the night of the quake, pushing up the death toll.
''Proper risk assessment should have been accompanied by
proper information,'' he explained.
The seven defendants have appealed against the ruling and
the case is expected to return to court at the end of this year.

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