Death toll climbs in Indonesian earthquake
by Onize Ohikere
Posted 8/06/18, 11:42 am
A 6.9 magnitude earthquake struck the Indonesian tourist island of Lombok and rattled Bali on Sunday evening, killing at least 98 people. Responders warn the death toll could rise as they try to reach areas that remain inaccessible. The quake hit the northern part of Lombok at a depth of 6 miles. It’s the second quake to hit the island in a week: a temblor on July 29 killed 16 people and damaged hundreds of houses there.
National Disaster Mitigation Agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said Sunday’s quake seriously injured more than 230 people and destroyed thousands of homes and buildings. Nugroho said rescuers are still trying to access some areas cordoned off by collapsed bridges and roads blocked with debris. Rescuers also lacked heavy equipment needed to search beneath the rubble for victims who were inside a mosque when the building collapsed. No foreign or local tourist visiting any of the three popular islands off northwest Lombok died in the disaster. Authorities already had evacuated about 1,000 tourists from the islands, Nugroho said. Airports in Bali and Lombok continued operations as airlines said they will try to include extra flights.
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Onize is a reporter for WORLD Digital based in Abuja, Nigeria.