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Italy tourism chiefs fear tourists will stay away

Italy tourism chiefs fear tourists will stay away
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Tourism officials in northern Italy are worried that holidaymakers could be put off travelling to the region following the three earthquakes.

A third tremor, with a magnitude of 4.5, struck off the northeastern coast on Wednesday. It followed two more severe earthquakes in late May which killed 26 people.

Patrizia Rinaldis – the president of the Hotels Association of Rimini – a town on the Adriatic coast, told euronews about her fears:

“The quake occurred at a depth of 25 km undersea. That helped contain any potential damage on land. But the tremor will be a worry for those who have holidays planned here this summer,” said Rinaldis.

“New hotels (in this area) are designed to be earthquake proof. I don’t know the exact parameters but most hotels are fairly small structures with an average of 30 to 40 beds. So far, hotel owners say there have been no cancellations, which is a relief, but surely many hotels can expect the number of reservations for the rest of the tourist season to go down.”

“The earthquake acts as mini domino effect to the existing economic crisis (in Italy). We are more worried about the negative media attention which has the potential to do the most damage,” she added.