Story by the International Federation of the Red Cross
Search and rescue teams and sniffer dogs from the Italian Red Cross are on the ground following a 6.2 magnitude earthquake in the early hours of the morning today.
The towns of Amatrice, Accumoli and Arquata del Tronto village in central Italy are the worst affected areas.
The Red Cross has also sent 20 ambulances to the affected areas, while local volunteers are on the ground providing support for survivors.
Italian Red Cross spokesman Tommaso Della Longa said: “The pictures that we have received from our colleagues in Amatrice are telling us a terrible story of a town almost completely destroyed.
"Our priority right now is finding survivors.”
Mobile kitchens are also being set up for people who have been forced to leave their homes. A 24-hour emergency control center has been activated in Rome, while the Red Cross is also working from a mobile operations center in the quake zone.
The Red Cross is also helping reconnect families who have lost contact due to the earthquake. For more information on accessing these services, please click here.