Published: Sun, August 12, 2018
World News | By Sandy Lane

Aftershock rocks Lombok in Indonesia as death toll rises

Aftershock rocks Lombok in Indonesia as death toll rises

The BNPB says during an emergency situation such differences in number are common; however, the official number should be from the BNPB and its West Nusa Tenggara Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD).

Another strong natural disaster with a magnitude of 6.2 has hit Indonesia's Lombok island, causing some buildings to collapse, according to witnesses and the South-East Asian nation's meteorology and geophysics agency.

The head of a Red Cross assessment team on the Indonesian island of Lombok has described Sunday's magnitude 7 quake as "exceptionally destructive", warning that it may still take days for the full impact to emerge.

Thursday's aftershock, rated at 6.2 by local authorities and 5.9 by the U.S. Geological Survey, buried four people in northern Lombok, Sutopo said.

TRT World spoke to Jack Hewson who is following the updates from capital, Jakarta.

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Dramatic video tweeted by authorities showed hundreds of people, many believed to be foreign vacationers, crammed onto a beach on the island of Gili Trawangan as evacuation measures got underway.

But national disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho told the BBC that only 259 deaths had been verified.

Indonesian president Joko Widodo (second from left) examining the damage following this week's Lombok quake.

However, he said today the "death toll has jumped significantly", without providing further details. The announcement came after an inter-agency meeting was called to resolve wildly different figures from various government offices.

The Indonesian Red Cross is focusing relief efforts on the northern areas of Lombok where aid has not yet reached.

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Indonesian soldiers unload relief aid for quake victims from a plane at an airbase in Mataram, Lombok, Indonesia on August 9, 2018.

The latest quake, which is understood to have struck 20 minutes before the building fell to the ground, claimed at least six fresh casualties and sent the death toll to more than 320.

"Access is tough, because the quake [on Sunday] was so strong and paralyzed a lot of buildings", said Husni, a spokesman for the International Federation of the Red Cross who like many Indonesians goes by one name. On a curb outside, she tripped and fell, glimpsing blood on her clothes before blacking out.

He estimated 75% of houses are damaged in some villages in east and north Lombok.

Dozens of injured people were being treated in tents temporarily set up in the northwest of the island, as the centre was damaged by the quake.

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Motorcycles parked on the street toppled over and the walls of some nearby buildings collapsed.

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