Strong quake shakes Lombok

30 July, 2018, 21:48 | Author: Bert Pena
  • Indonesian soldiers and rescue team members prepare to evacuate tourists from Mount Rinjani in the background at Sembalun in East Lombok Indonesia on Monday. A strong and shallow earthquake early Sunday killed at least 16 people

Helicopters and rescue teams on foot have been deployed to scour the slopes of Mount Rinjani, which is crisscrossed with hiking routes popular with tourists.

Efforts were underway on Monday to rescue several hundred trekkers stranded on Mount Rinjani on Indonesia's Lombok Island, a day after a powerful 6.4 magnitude quake struck the popular tourist destination, a disaster agency official said.

More than 500 hikers from 26 countries were stuck on Mount Rinjani on Lombok island after the 6.4 magnitude natural disaster triggered a landslide, Sky News reported.

Scores of aftershocks sparked fear among survivors.

The Indonesian Agency for Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics recorded more than 130 aftershocks.

Officials have declared a three-day state of emergency.

According to Indonesia's National Disaster Management Agency, at least 162 people have been injured by the tremors, which occurred about 140 miles east of Bali.

"Some of the injured are still being treated at clinic", Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, a spokesperson for disaster mitigation agency, said according to BBC.

One Malaysian was killed and six injured, the Malaysian foreign ministry said.

He said Monday about 300 of them had managed to get down the mountain.

Damage to a building on the tourist island after the quake.

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Earlier, Mr Nugroho tweeted pictures of houses with collapsed roofs and walls.

He said the area was temporarily closed to climbers because there were reports of landslides. "He told me that I had to go, and that they would be okay".

"Fortunately there was no panic during the quake even though it was quite strong", said Lilis Letisha, receptionist at the Ombak Paradise Hotel on Gili Air island.

"My trekking guide who was accompanying two tourists from Spain suffered from minor injuries during the jolt".

The two Spaniards were also slightly hurt.

Today, the head of Rinjani national park said 560 people remain on the mountain, although some have started to descend.

The powerful quake, whose epicenter was at a depth of 7 kilometers, hit at 6:47 am local time, the USGS said.

Lombok is the next island east of Bali.

He said Malaysian embassy officials would arrive in Lombok tomorrow to assist in the process and also to help other Malaysians stranded by the natural disaster.

"All my neighbours also ran outside and the electricity was suddenly cut off", he said. Authorities have issued a yellow alert, suggesting there is a chance of casualties.

"People are gathering on the streets and in empty fields to avoid collapsing buildings", he said.

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