Friday, May 13, 2011

Hundreds queue for food after Spanish earthquake

LORCA, Spain, May 12 (Reuters) - Hundreds of people queued for food aid in the Spanish town of Lorca and wandered the streets wrapped in blankets on Thursday after an earthquake killed eight people and injured more than 120.

Thousands of residents of the town slept on the street overnight, unable to return home after the 5.1 magnitude quake on Wednesday evening destroyed masonry and building facades, crushed cars and littered streets with bricks.

Many of Lorca's 90,000 residents were waiting for housing inspectors to give them the green light to enter buildings.

Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said 800 military and civil guard personnel were in Lorca, 370 army tents had been sent, and a camp hospital had been set up.

"We've activated all aid measures with maximum speed," he said live on television, pledging to rebuild damaged water mains and roads quickly and to visit the town on Friday.

The number of fatalities was revised down to eight, including one teenage girl, from an earlier report of 10. More than 120 people were injured, three critically, officials said.

Food distribution points were set up in parks and troops set up temporary tent shelter for 3,000 people made homeless by the quake, which hit at 6:46 p.m. (1446 GMT) on Wednesday.

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