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Chunks of mortar fall off Rome's Colosseum before visiting hours; arena stays open to tourists

ROME (AP) — Rome archaeology officials say three chunks of mortar have fallen off from the Colosseum but that no one was hurt and tourist visits will go on as normal.

The pieces, covering a total of about a square meter (about 10 square feet), occurred about 6 a.m. Sunday, hours before the ancient arena opens to the public.

Archaeology official Roberto Cecchi said the area involved was already scheduled for maintenance and will be further inspected on Monday.

Meanwhile, the area has been cordoned off and the monument is open as usual for visits.

Although engineers have described the Colosseum as showing extraordinary resistance over the centuries, it is closely monitored.