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Indonesia earthquake death toll rises to 162, rescue ops on for survivors

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DailyBiteNov 22, 2022 | 11:58

Indonesia earthquake death toll rises to 162, rescue ops on for survivors

Residents inspect houses damaged by Monday's earthquake in Cianjur, West Java, Indonesia. (AP Photo)

Rescue operations were going on in Indonesia's Java island for survivors on Tuesday (November 22) morning after a magnitude 5.6  earthquake on Monday (November 21) killed at least 162 and injured hundreds.

The city of Cianjur was the worst affected as it was near the epicentre of the quake which destroyed houses, building and roads.

Injured survivors being treated under a makeshift tent at a hospital in Cianjur, Indonesia on Monday night. (AP Photo)

What happened: According to the US Geological Survey, a 5.6 magnitude earthquake struck Cianjur town in West Java, at a very shallow depth of 10km.

  • Several buildings were completely destroyed as people ran outside their house for safety. The area where the quake struck is densely populated with poorly built houses, and many were turned to rubble.
  • The country's disaster mitigation agency said more than 2,000 houses were damaged and West Java governor Ridwan Kamil said more than 13,000 people were taken to evacuation centres, reported AFP.

Rescue operations: On Tuesday morning, hundreds of police officers were deployed to assist in rescue efforts, Dedi Prasetyo, a national police spokesperson told the Antara state news agency.

  • Rescue efforts were complicated by electricity outages in some areas, and more than 80 aftershocks, reported Reuters.
  • Operations were focused on about a dozen locations in Cianjur, where people are still believed trapped, AP reported Endra Atmawidjaja, the public works and housing spokesperson as saying.
  • "We are racing against time to rescue people," Atmawidjaja said.

The Ring of Fire: Indonesia is frequently struck by earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and tsunamis because of its location on the arc of volcanoes and fault lines in the Pacific Basin known as the "Ring of Fire."

  • In February, a magnitude 6.2 earthquake killed at least 25 people and injured more than 460 in West Sumatra province. In January 2021, a magnitude 6.2 earthquake killed more than 100 people and injured nearly 6,500 in West Sulawesi province, reported AP.
  • In 2004, a 9.1 magnitude quake off Sumatra island in northern Indonesia triggered a tsunami that led to the death of 226,000 people in 14 countries.
Last updated: November 22, 2022 | 13:08
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