Indonesia earthquake death toll reaches 98

News Desk , Bol News

05:38:59, Monday, August 06, 2018

Officials in Indonesia say the death toll from a powerful earthquake on the tourist island of Lombok has risen to 98 and will "definitely increase".

It is expected to climb further because rescuers are struggling to reach some areas left devastated by the tremors.

Two of the people who died were in neighboring Bali at the time of the 7.0 magnitude quake, which has also left more than 200 people with serious injuries and flattened thousands of homes and buildings.

Most of those killed and hurt were hit by falling rubble and 20,000 people are in temporary shelters.

National Disaster Mitigation Agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho told a news conference that the damage in the north of Lombok was "massive", with several districts so badly hit that rescuers cannot access them.

They are coming up against collapsed bridges, electricity blackouts and roads blocked with debris in their bid to search for survivors, although Mr Nugroho has said that the death toll will "definitely increase".

Experts say the shallow nature of the quake added to the damage it caused, with it having struck at a depth of six miles.

Tourists and locals alike were caught up in the disaster on Sunday evening, which came a week after another tremor killed 16 people and injured dozens more on the same island.

Patients had to be evacuated and treated outside a hospital in the main city of Mataram after electricity was knocked out, and shoppers were caught on camera running and screaming as they tried to escape a mall in Bali.

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