Monday, 21 January, 2019


Third strong earthquake shakes Lombok as death toll tops 319

Bennie Garza | 09 August, 2018, 17:14

A magnitude 6.2 aftershock rocked Indonesia's Lombok on Thursday, sparking fresh panic on the tropical tourist island as the official death toll from a powerful quake four days earlier nearly doubled to 259.

The latest tremor, the third in over a week, had a magnitude of 6.2, according to Indonesia's geological agency.

The U.S. Geological Survey measured the quake at magnitude 5.9.

Humanitarian groups say that they are focusing their efforts on reaching these areas which have so far been impassable because of collapsed buildings, roads and other destruction related to Sunday's quake.

A Reuters witness said the latest quake sent people into the streets in panic and caused buildings to collapse.

Journalists reporting on the aftermath of the fatal natural disaster saw people running into the streets in panic.

Officials have said that the death toll will likely rise as rescuers continue to sift through the rubble.

It further weakened any buildings still standing on the island in the wake of Sunday's 7.0 quake, and a 6.4 quake on July 29 that killed 16, complicating rescue operations.

Tens of thousands of homes, businesses and mosques were levelled by the quake, which struck on Sunday as evening prayers were being said across the Muslim-majority island.

A man inspects the ruins of houses at a village affected by Sunday's quake in Kayangan, Lombok Island, Indonesia.

The aftershock had caused more "trauma", said national disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho.

There is a dire need for medical staff and "long-term aid", especially food and medicine in the worst-hit areas, government officials said.

One aid agency, Yayasan Plan International Indonesia, has warned that thousands of children have been left homeless, forced to sleep in open fields without warm clothing or blankets.

"I visited villages yesterday that were completely collapsed", he said, while other teams in East and North Lombok had reported villages where 75 percent of homes were damaged. More than 1,000 schools have been damaged, the organization said.

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