A strong earthquake rocked a large swathe of northern Italy causing at least three deaths and collapsing rural factories and ancient bell towers in towns.
The epicentre of the quake, which struck at 4.04am local time and had a magnitude of 5.9, was in the plains near Modena.
One person working a night shift died in the collapse of a factory and two others were killed in the collapse of another building. Rescue officials were checking reports that other people were buried under rubble.
Thousands of people in the area rushed into the streets after the quake, felt in the major towns of Bologna, Modena, Ferrara, Rovigo, Verona and Mantua.A series of strong aftershocks hit the area and local mayors ordered residents to stay out of their homes.
More top news
Half of those killed or maimed in the last 72 hours of intense bombardments in Aleppo have been children.
Astronomers said: "Europa’s ocean is considered to be one of the most promising places that could potentially harbor life".
The rain will ease in the west tonight, but the cloud cover will remain across much of England, Wales and N. Ireland.