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17Sep92 ITALY: PISA RESCUE SCHEME PROCEEDS ACCORDING TO PLAN.

The international commission set up to stabilise the Tower of Pisa has agreed to press ahead with the second phase of the rescue plan possibly as early as January.Commission member, Professor John Burland of Imperial College, said: 'Obviously the first stage of the work was to improve the situation temporarily and that meant stabilising the masonry with the steel bands we've put around the Tower.'That's been done very successfully and it looks a lot better than I think most people imagined.'Throughout this work the Tower has been closely monitored using Building Research Establishment equipment and expertise. But so far no problems have been found and the international team of experts is now ready to move on to the second phase of the programme.This involves placing a massive lead counterweight on the ground away from the direction of tilt. If this proves as successful as the commission hopes, then a permanent one along similar lines will be built two years later.