Rains cause new collapses in Pompeii

Dec. 1, 2010 at 12:07 PM
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POMPEII, Italy, Dec. 1 (UPI) -- Two ancient walls in the historic city of Pompeii fell down in heavy rains, making four collapses in less than a month, Italian authorities said.

A 6-foot-high, 9-foot-thick section of a dividing wall collapsed in one part of the city while in another an upper section of an entrance to a small ancient brothel collapsed, ANSA reported.

Pompeii Superintendent Jeannette Papadopoulos played down the incidents, saying "these episodes are possible in the life span of a 2,000-year-old, vast archaeological site, especially in weather conditions like the ones over the past few days."

The new collapses "should not generate any alarmism or sensationalism," she said.

The incidents raised new worries after the Nov. 6 collapse of the ancient city's gladiators' school.

There has been an international outcry over the state of the UNESCO World Heritage site, one of Italy's most visited tourist attractions.

Two million people a year visit Pompeii, smothered in lava and ash by the A.D. 79 eruption of Mount Vesuvius.

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