Thousands killed, injured in Indonesian double disaster


A 7.5 magnitude earthquake struck Indonesia’s Sulawesi island 28 September, triggering destructive tsunami waves as high as 6 meters (20 feet). 

More than 1,200 people were killed and 800 were seriously injured. The earthquake and subsequent waves damaged more than 65,000 homes and displaced more than 60,000 people

Government officials fear the death toll could increase dramatically since most of the confirmed dead have come from a single city, Palu. Some remote areas have been largely cut off due to the destruction of many roads and bridges, and the losses in those areas have yet to be determined.

Many people were reportedly trapped in the rubble of collapsed buildings.

“The situation is chaotic,” Dwikorita Karnawati, from Indonesia’s meteorology and geophysics agency, told Reuters. “People are running on the streets and buildings have collapsed. There is a ship washed ashore.”

The closest Church of the Nazarene is about 200 kilometers (124 miles) south of the affected area. Volunteers headed to the area for assessment, but it will take them several days to arrive.

"What we now desperately need is heavy machinery to clear the rubble,” said Muhammad Syaugi, head of the national search-and-rescue agency. “I have my staff on the ground, but it's impossible just to rely on their strength alone to clear this."

Prayer is requested for the disaster victims and for those who are responding.

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