Monday, 12 November, 2018

Lombok quake: Thousands evacuated from Indonesian islands

Lombok quake: Thousands evacuated from Indonesian islands Lombok quake: Thousands evacuated from Indonesian islands
Melinda Barton | 10 August, 2018, 04:18

Scenes of destruction greeted rescue workers across Indonesia's resort island of Lombok on Monday, after an natural disaster of magnitude 6.9 killed at least 98 people and prompted an exodus of tourists rattled by the second powerful quake in a week.

Power and communications were severed in some areas, with landslides and a collapsed bridge blocking access to areas around the quake epicentre in the north.

Oxfam said more than 20,000 people were in temporary shelters and thousands more were camping out in the open.

Thousands of residents of Mataram flocked to evacuate the capital of West Nusa Tenggara province (NTB) following a tsunami warning after the 7.0 magnitude quake rocked Lombok Island on Sunday night.

Sutopo said the figure would rise still further.

No Australians are thought to be have been killed or injured in the deadly Lombok quake.

Singapore's Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam was in Lombok for a security conference when the natural disaster struck.

"Walls cracked, it was quite impossible to stand up", he said. Heard screams. Came out, and made my way down a staircase, while building was still shaking. "Lots of cracks, fallen doors", he wrote on Facebook.

The powerful quake struck at a depth of 10.5 kilometers off the north coast of Lombok, a little over a mile from Loloan village, on Sunday night local time, the USGS said.

A tweet from the head of the Disaster Mitigation Agency in Indonesia said 1,000 foreign tourists were being evacuated from the islands.

Travellers at the worldwide airports in Lombok and Bali were thrown into panic and there was minor damage to the buildings but operations were not disrupted, officials said.

"I was watching TV when I felt a big shake", said Harian, a Lombok woman who uses one name.

Video showed screaming people running in panic from houses in a Bali neighbourhood and vehicles rocking. Eyewitnesses said a number of aftershocks rattled parts of Indonesia after the initial quake. Red Cross workers moved people to higher ground and advised people in coastal areas to leave due to tsunami concerns, said agency spokesman Arifin M Hadi.

The tsunami warning was lifted after a few hours.

The death toll in Sunday's quake that jolted two islands of Indonesia has increased to 98.

After a 6.1 quake on July 28 that killed many on the Indonesian Tourist Island of Lombok a 7.1-magnitude natural disaster on Sunday night made this situation so much worse.

Indonesia's National Disaster Mitigation Agency says the death toll from the quake on Lombok has risen to 91 and could rise further as rescuers still haven't reached some of the worst affected areas in the north of the island.

Some villagers living near the epicenter had to sleep in roadside tents as their houses were destroyed. Most of the deaths were caused by collapsing houses. It was followed by more than 120 aftershocks recorded by a local Agency of meteorology, climatology and Geophysics.

He tweeted: "This morning I bumped into so many British families leaving Bali".

The seven-magnitude tremor struck just 10km underground, according to the US Geological Survey. Many got out but dozens were trapped, he said.