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Chile declares state of emergency due to massive wildfiresSANTIAGO – Chile declared a state of emergency on Friday as more than a dozen wildfires that have scorched nearly 50,000 hectares (123,500 acres) threatened to encroach on towns, factories and vineyards.
Firefighters, forestry service personnel and members of the military are battling 18 separate blazes in the center and south of the country that have been fueled by strong winds and a heat wave.
The largest has consumed 24,000 hectares in and around Pumanque, a rural area some 140 kilometers (87 miles) south of the capital Santiago that is near some of Chile’s vineyards.
“I’ve instructed the Interior Ministry to declare a catastrophe zone and a state of emergency in the areas affected by the fires,” President Michelle Bachelet said on Twitter.
The smoke from the blazes cloaked…
10 People Found Alive in Collapsed Italian Hotel Hit by Avalanche
Firefighter spokesman Luca Cari said so far 10 people have been found alive in the debris of the avalanche-struck Hotel Rigopiano in central Italy.
Cari gave the update late Friday afternoon as rescue workers continued trying to extract survivors from the collapsed buildings of the resort northeast of Rome.
Helicopters were ferrying the survivors to a hospital in Pescara on the Adriatic coast.
Rescuers say four bodies have been found at the since the avalanche struck Wednesday afternoon…
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