Deadly Lombok quake rattles tourists in Bali

Lamar Ellis
August 9, 2018

At least 82 people have been killed after a powerful quake measuring 7 on the Richter scale jolted the Indonesian island of Lombok, officials said. No casualties have been reported so far.

The pressure that caused the Lombok quake was created by the Australian plate pushing northwards into the Indonesian plate.

According to the US Geological Survey (USGS), the quake was centred 50 kilometres northeast of the city Mataram on the northern part of Lombok island, with a depth of 10 km. The total of those killed in Bali due to the quake are only two at this time.

The area continued to be rattled by aftershocks from the quake, which occurred days after a 6.4 tremor hit Lombok on July 29, killing 14 people and injuring 162 people. "A lot of officials were urging people not to panic".

"The lamp was shaking, and people were shouting 'Get out.' I ran out into the dark because the power cut off".

Debris littered the streets of Lombok and Bali, which local people sought to clean up in the hours after the quake.

Nugroho said more than 20,000 people had been displaced.

Oxfam said it was providing clean drinking water and tarpaulin shelter sheets to 5,000 people and planned to intensify aid delivery.

At least one person, an Indonesian holidaymaker, was killed on the Gili islands while another tourist died on nearby Bali, which is a major destination.

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"We were sitting there having dinner at about 7 o'clock last night, we just felt a really big sort of shaking and the lights went off and everyone just ran", Australian tourist Kim Liebelt said as he waited with other travellers for a flight out at Lombok's global airport.

Plan International Indonesia spokeswoman Dini Widiastuti said the staff immediately sprang into action to assist with the evacuation to higher ground.

Another strong quake has struck Indonesia's popular tourist island of Lombok.

Those who took out travel insurance before news of the quakes hit mainstream media will likely be covered if they decide to cancel their trips.

Australia's home affairs minister tweeted that he and his delegation were safely evacuated in darkness from a Lombok hotel where they have been staying during a regional security conference.

Hotels and other buildings in both locations are not allowed to exceed the height of coconut trees.

AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes tweeted that the budget airline would try to lay on extra flights, while Indonesian budget carriers Lion Air and Citilink said there had been a jump in demand for outbound flights from Lombok and Bali.

Earthquakes are common in Indonesia, which is situated on the "Ring of Fire" seismically active hotspot encircling the Pacific Ocean.

In 2004 a tsunami triggered by a magnitude 9.3 undersea natural disaster off the coast of Sumatra in western Indonesia killed 220,000 people in countries around the Indian Ocean, including 168,000 in Indonesia.

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