Dead in Indonesia – shock in the South Seas

An earthquake on the Indonesian island of Java has left a trail of destruction and despair. Over 200 people lost their lives. A severe earthquake also shook the Solomon Islands.

An earthquake on the Indonesian main island of Java has left a trail of destruction and despair around the city of Cianjur. The death toll rose to 252 by Tuesday afternoon (local time), according to the local civil protection agency.

Task forces were still looking for more than 30 missing people in the rubble and under mud avalanches. With the help of excavators and dump trucks, they worked to open up access to areas cut off from the outside world by landslides. Hundreds of people are injured, some seriously.

President Joko Widodo visited the disaster area on Tuesday and promised financial aid for those affected. In particular, it is important to quickly rescue those who are still buried. Earthquake-proof construction standards would have to be applied during reconstruction, as earthquakes would repeatedly occur in the island nation, he warned.

Indonesia lies on the Pacific Ring of Fire, the most geologically active zone on earth. The volcanic belt surrounds the Pacific Ocean on three sides. There are regular volcanic eruptions, but also violent earthquakes and seaquakes.

Quake in the South Seas

And the earth on the ring of fire gives no rest. A severe earthquake shook the Solomon Islands in the South Pacific on Tuesday. The 7.0 magnitude quake struck at noon (local time) near the town of Malango in Guadalcanal province at a depth of about 15 kilometers. A tsunami warning caused fear and panic – but this was lifted after a few hours.

There were initially no reports of deaths or injuries or major destruction in the Solomon Islands, but according to local media there is said to be damage to buildings. Many people tried to get away from the coasts to higher ground. Malango is less than 40 kilometers southwest of the capital, Honiara. The authorities advised the population to remain cautious even after the all-clear, as aftershocks are to be expected. The Solomon Islands with around 700,000 inhabitants are located east of New Guinea.

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