A tragedy occurred in the early hours of Sunday, when a landslide demolished apartments to let, which resulted in the death of a Lithuanian woman and the serious injury of a nine-year-old boy. The incident occurred at the settlement of Agia Fotia in Ierapetra, Crete.
A large rock fell down a hillside in a rented-room complex near the beach. Consequently, two apartments were completely destroyed. One of them was empty, but the other one was housing a family of three from Lithuania, who were trapped in the debris.
A rescue operation of four hours
Two vehicles and men from the Ierapetra Fire Brigade initially arrived at the scene. Large forces of the Fire Brigade (fifty men with twenty vehicles) were then called from other parts of Crete, as were rescuers from EMAK, a special unit for disasters, and EKAV, a Greek emergency response team. Many volunteers from the Hellenic Red Cross and other organizations came to assist as well.
The 51-year-old father of the family was extricated from the apartment without serious injuries, but the nine-year-old boy was crushed by the debris, and it took a lot of effort to rescue him after his leg was “stuck” in the rubble. The boy was eventually saved albeit with several severe injuries.
At the same time, the rescuers were looking for the 45-year-old mother on whom investigations were focused. After great effort by the fire department and rescuers, who dug for about four hours in the wreckage and at a depth of 1.5 meters, the 45-year-old woman was found unconscious and was taken to the hospital where she was pronounced dead.
The family was spending their last night on Crete before leaving for their homeland.
Σε εξέλιξη επιχείρηση για τον εντοπισμό γυναίκας σε χώρο ξενοδοχείου, τμήμα του οποίου κατέρρευσε στην Αγία Φωτιά Λασιθίου Κρήτης, ενώ τραυματισμένος απεγκλωβίστηκε ένας ανήλικος. Επιχειρούν 18 #πυροσβέστες με 6 οχήματα ενώ μεταβαίνουν 23 ακόμη πυροσβέστες με 8 οχήματα.
— Πυροσβεστικό Σώμα (@pyrosvestiki) October 29, 2022
EKAV transferred the nine-year-old boy to the Ierapetra Hospital. Despite his multiple injuries, his life is not in danger.
Crete in shock after tourist was killed by a landslide
The landslide and subsequent death of the tourist have devastated the communities of Ierapetra and the entire island of Crete.
“We are shocked by this tragic event that could not have been predicted by anyone,” said the President of the Ierapetra Hotel Union Giorgos Vardakis.
“Thousands of visitors spend their holidays in the area every year and it is one of the most popular in our country,” added Vardakis. “What happened has caused great sadness.”