Indonesia quake death toll almost triples to 347

Clay Curtis
August 9, 2018

The quake caused some buildings to collapse, according to witnesses and Indonesia's meteorology agency.

Rescuers search Karang Pangsor mosque after the natural disaster last weekend.

Sunday's quake came only days after a slightly smaller one, which killed at least 16 people.

The US Geological Survey measured the quake at magnitude 5.9.

Aid begun trickling into some of the most isolated regions, officials said midday Thursday, but many people displaced by the quake still lack basic supplies.

Local authorities, worldwide relief groups and the central government have begun organising aid, but shattered roads have slowed efforts to reach survivors in the mountainous north of Lombok, which bore the brunt of the quake.

Officials said about three-quarters of Lombok's rural north had been without electricity since Sunday, although power had since been restored in most areas.

Rescue workers are still digging through rubble and trying to get aid to victims of the earlier, larger quake.

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Reuters witnesses reporting on the aftermath of last Sunday's quake in the north of the island said people ran out onto roads in panic and some buildings collapsed.

The official death toll from Sunday's quake stands at 131 for Sunday's quake, although some Indonesian officials put the number at 347.

Indonesia is located on the Pacific "Ring of Fire".

The Indonesian Red Cross said it was focusing its Lombok quake relief efforts on an estimated 20,000 people in remote areas in the north of the island where aid still has not reached.

Spokesman Arifin Hadi said people need clean water and tarpaulins most of all.

The military said it sent five planes carrying food, medicine, blankets, field tents and water tankers. The disaster agency says the higher figures are unverified.

He said they were also looking for people with untreated injuries.

Spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said there are reports of other deaths but they still need to be verified.

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