Rescuers scramble to retrieve survivors of Indonesia's strong quake as aftershock amplifies risks

Xinhua
Soldiers, police, and personnel from search and rescue office and disaster management agency jointly attempted to pull out quake victims stuck in rubbles of twisted wreckage.
Xinhua
Xinhua

A man takes a picture of the ruins after an earthquake in North Lombok, Indonesia, on August 9, 2018.

Thousands of rescuers have been struggling to search and rescue victims of Sunday's powerful quake in Lombok Island of Indonesia under the wreckage of buildings as a 5.9-magnitude aftershock amplified the risks on Thursday, a disaster agency official said.

Soldiers, police personnel, and personnel from search and rescue office and disaster management agency jointly attempted to pull out quake victims stuck in rubbles of twisted wreckage.

It is estimated many of the victims remain underneath the ruin, Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, spokesman of national disaster management agency said.

A total of 24 heavy machinery equipment have been deployed to the scene, Sutopo added.

The most recent and strongest aftershock to hit the region occurred on Thursday, with a magnitude of 5.9, with a shallow of 12 km under-earth and epicenter in the already quake-affected areas. The aftershock amplified the downside risks of Sunday's 7.0-magnitude quake, he said.

As a whole, the spokesman said that Sunday's powerful earthquake has killed 259 people, with 1,033 injured and 270,168 displaced.

Meanwhile, a total of 67,857 houses, 468 school buildings, six bridges, three hospitals, 50 Islamic religious buildings, 20 office buildings were devastated or collapsed, he said.

About a week ahead of the 7.0-magnitude quake that hit Lombok Island, a 6.4-magnitude quake struck the popular tourism destination.

Indonesia has been frequently stricken by quake as it is situated on a vulnerable quake-affected rim so called "the Pacific Ring of Fire."   

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