Everything you need to know so far about the earthquake in Italy

Updated: 

The earthquake which struck Italy in the early hours of Wednesday has devastated the region as the death toll continues to climb.

Here's what we know so far.

A magnitude 6.2 earthquake struck central Italy at 3.36am local time.

Hardest-hit were the tiny towns of Amatrice and Accumoli near Rieti, some 80 miles north-east of Rome, and Pescara del Tronto further east.

The three towns were reduced to rubble in many places.

A graphic showing the location of the earthquake on a map of Italy (PA Graphics/PA)
(PA Graphics/PA)

The area is a popular holiday spot in the summer, with populations swelling, making the number of people in the area at the time difficult to estimate.

"The town isn't here any more," said Sergio Pirozzi, the mayor of Amatrice. "I believe the toll will rise."

The death toll currently stands at 120.

Rubble following the earthquake (Gregorio Borgia/AP)
(Gregorio Borgia/AP)

The toll is likely to rise as crews reach homes in more remote hamlets, where the scenes were apocalyptic "like Dante's Inferno", according to one witness.

Rescuers continue to work through the night to free trapped victims, and Italy's national blood service has called for people to come forward and donate.

The Queen has sent her condolences to the president of Italy

Teh queen, wearing a cream hat (Andrew Milligan/PA)
(Andrew Milligan/PA)

The Queen has sent a message of condolence to the Italian president following the devastating earthquake.

"Prince Philip and I were saddened to hear of the loss of life following the earthquake in central Italy," the Queen said in her message to President Sergio Mattarella.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the people of Italy, especially the family and friends of those affected."