Indonesia quake: a neighborhood buried, a final embrace

Posted October 02, 2018

Indonesian rescue team inspect the damage of Roa-Roa Hotel following a massive natural disaster and tsunami in Palu, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia, Monday, Oct. 1, 2018. Buildings too close to the water that collapsed as giant waves hit Palu and elsewhere in central Sulawesi plainly show that lessons have still not been learned.

"The casualties will keep increasing", said national disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, whose agency announced the jump in the toll from 420 earlier.

Since the first few initial days of search and rescue have passed, aid agencies are now coordinating with the government to provide residents with food and hygiene kits, along with tarpaulins, blankets and mats for temporary shelters.

He said the European Union and 10 countries have offered assistance, including the United States, Australia and China. The magnitude 7.5 quake struck at dusk Friday and generated a tsunami said to have been as high as 6 meters (20 feet) in places.

"There has been no aid, we need to eat".

Britain will send a team of aid experts to Indonesia after its government made a plea for help in dealing with the aftermath of the devastating Sulawesi natural disaster.

President Joko Widodo visited the region, urging a "day and night" effort to rescue survivors.

The Chair of Indonesia's Investment Coordinating Board, Thomas Lembong, took to Twitter on Monday to announce that Indonesian President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo has authorized the acceptance of worldwide aid for the disaster.

"We will pay for it all", said security minister Wiranto, who like many Indonesians goes by one name.

A key access road had been badly damaged and was partially blocked by landslides. But we could not do anything to help them.

Indonesian rescue team carry down the body of a victim to a grave during a mass burial in following a massive natural disaster and tsunami in Palu, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia, on October 1, 2018. At one mass grave which measured more than 50 metres (165ft), the smell of decomposition was said to be "overpowering".

More than 3,000 people gathered at Palu's airport Monday hoping to catch a ride out on a military plane but most were disappointed.

Other rescuers worked to try to free a 15-year-old girl trapped under concrete in her house in Palu after it collapsed on her family during the quake.

"We suspect there are still some survivors trapped inside", the head of on rescue team, Agus Haryono, told Reuters at the collapsed seven-floor Hotel Roa Roa.

Elsewhere in Palu, workers continued to search for survivors from a collapsed shopping mall.

The quakes come weeks after a trio of earthquakes hit several islands in the South Pacific and Indonesia, including Lombok, which is still recovering from the effects of an August 5 natural disaster that killed more than 430 people.

"My volunteers found 34 bodies. children who had been doing a bible camp", Arriani said. A quake off Sumatra island in 2004 triggered a tsunami across the Indian Ocean that killed 226,000 people in 13 countries, including more than 120,000 in Indonesia.

But undeterred, more and more mopeds arrived, depositing people in front of the store.

"We were informed that all of the detainees have escaped because the building was destroyed by the natural disaster and tsunami", Orcine said. These three areas have a combined population of 1.2 million people, and as such, the total of deaths is predicted to increase.