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Monday, June 5, 2023

56 Killed In Indonesia Earthquake, Landslides Triggered, Buildings Damaged

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A shallow 5.6-magnitude earthquake killed at least 56 people and injured hundreds when it damaged buildings and triggered landslides on Indonesia’s main island of Java on Monday, officials said.

Doctors treated patients outdoors after the quake — felt as far away as the capital Jakarta — left hospitals without power for several hours.

“You can see it yourself, some got their heads, feet sewn outdoors. Some got stressed and started crying,” West Java governor Ridwan Kamil told a press conference broadcast on Kompas TV.

He added that power had been partially restored by the evening, without specifying if through a generator or connection to a power grid.

The afternoon quake was centred in the Cianjur region of West Java, according to the United States Geological Survey, with local authorities saying 56 people had been killed and over 700 wounded.

“Because there are still a lot of people trapped on the scene, we assume injuries and fatalities will increase over time,” said Kamil as ambulance sirens blared throughout his press conference.

The majority of deaths were counted in one hospital, head of Cianjur’s local administration Herman Suherman said earlier, with most of the victims killed in the ruins of collapsed buildings.

He told local media the town’s Sayang hospital had no power after the quake, leaving doctors unable to immediately operate on victims.

More health workers were urgently needed due to the overwhelming number of patients, he added.

Locals rushed victims to the hospital on pickup trucks and motorbikes, according to footage obtained by AFP.

They were placed in front of the facility as residents spread a tarpaulin on the road for the bodies.

Kamil, the governor, said multiple landslides had cut off road access to some areas and bulldozers were being used to open them up.

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