Drone footage shows Indonesia tsunami devastation after 10ft wave wipes out a beach festival – sweeping away partygoers, obliterating two towns killing 832
- 832 people have been killed after a 6.1 magnitude tremor hit the central Indonesian island of Sulawesi on Friday followed by a massive 7.5 magnitude earthquake
- Indonesia’s disaster agency’s Sutopo Purwo Nugroho withdrew an earlier warning to residents of a tsunami
- But three hours later Indonesia’s geophysics agency said there had been one, and hundreds have now died
- The cities of Palu and Donggala were struck by 10ft waves which demolished houses and swept away cars
The devastating impact of a huge tsunami in the Indonesian city of Palu has been revealed in chilling aerial photographs – in a natural disaster estimated to have killed 832 people.
The tsunami, which was triggered after a magnitude-7.5 earthquake, ripped through the Pacific Ring of Fire and crashed into the Palu at 500mph, causing widespread destruction.
Indonesian media, citing the national disaster agency, said Saturday that a further 540 people were injured in Palu City alone, on the the Indonesian island of Sulawesi.
Fears are mounting for the the fishing town of Donggala, which was closer to the epicentre of the quake, but which rescuers have not been able to reach. The town of Mamuju was also severely affected but currently impossible to access due to damaged roads and disrupted telecommunications.
Meanwhile criticisms have been levelled at the counry’s geophysics agency for lifting the tsunami warning 34 minutes after it was first issued, which may have led to confusion and exacerbated the death toll.
Many of those killed in Palu were swept away by giant waves more than 10ft high as they played on the beach in the scenic tourist town.
The number of casualties was no doubt increased by the fact that hundreds of people had descended on Palu’s beach for a festival to celebrate the city’s anniversary, due to start Friday night.
‘When the (tsunami) threat arose yesterday, people were still doing their activities on the beach and did not immediately run and they became victims,’ Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, spokesman of Indonesia’s disaster mitigation agency BNPB said in news briefing in Jakarta.
Some people climbed trees to escape the tsunami and survived, Nugroho said.
The first earthquake was of 6.1 magnitude and hit Indonesia’s densely populated region on Friday morning, quickly followed by even fiercer 7.5 magnitude tremors which caused the terrifying waves.
The National Disaster Mitigation Agency warned early on of reports showing that ‘victims died in the rubble of a collapsed building’.
It is thought thousands of buildings have been damaged, with some entirely swept away or demolished, leaving scores of families still missing among the debris.
Strong aftershocks continued to rock Palu on Saturday morning.
Photographs from the city on the coast of Sulawesi island showed bodies being lined up along the street, some in bags and others with their faces covered with clothes.
Bodies of some victims were found trapped under the rubble of collapsed buildings, Nugroho said.
Injured people were being treated in makeshift medical tents set up outdoors and in the hallways of hospitals.
Source: Daily Mail