Tsunami warning after quake off Lombok

Tonya Becker
August 6, 2018

Christian Avant and his girlfriend were preparing to go to sleep on Sunday night when a 7.0 magnitude natural disaster struck off the island of Lombok, killing at least 82 people and sending tremors and aftershocks through neighbouring Bali.

A power blackout at Lombok airport forced authorities to temporarily evacuate the site, and minor damage has been reported at the Bali airport, but local authorities state both airports continued their operations overnight.

The quake struck Lombok at a depth of 10km, a week after a magnitude 6.4 quake killed 14 people on the island and briefly stranded hundreds of hikers on the slopes of a volcano. The epicentre of the quake, which struck at the depth of 31 kilometres (19 miles), was near Loloan on the northern end of Lombok island.

Along with some aftershocks, he said there was damage visible but there were no fatalities or major injuries around him.

An Australian tourist who felt the impact of the deadly Indonesian natural disaster has described the scenes of panic and chaos as he and his partner attempted to find their way out of their Bali hotel.

Rescue officials said much of the damage had hit Lombok's main city of Mataram.

He said three ships had evacuated 1,000 tourists so far.

The Malaysian embassy says those in Lombok as well as students in Bali are safe following the natural disaster which hit yesterday evening.

"I was at the rooftop of my hotel and the building started swaying very hard".

Bikes are seen covered in debris at a mall in Bali's capital Denpasar on August 5, 2018 after a major natural disaster rocked the neighbouring Lombok island.

It was the second quake to hit Lombok in a week. "Next time we will stay in France or somewhere close".

The head of the disaster management agency in Indonesia's West Nusa Tenggara province, Muhammad Rum, says the death toll from an quake that hit the tourist island of Lombok has risen to 39.

"All the activities are shut down". Earlier officials said at least 39 people had died.

Dutch tourist Marc Ganbuwalba injured his knee as a stampede of diners rushed from a restaurant after the quake. "Some of them said their own houses had been destroyed but they were still helping us".

Singapore Law and Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam, who was on the 10th floor of a hotel in Mataram when the quake struck, said that his room shook violently and walls cracked.

"It was quite impossible to stand up". And then there was a massive power outage, went dark and then the power came back on within a few seconds. "Lots of cracks, fallen doors", he wrote.

There are now nine New Zealanders registered as being on Lombok.

Australia's Minister for Home Affairs Peter Dutton was on the 12th floor of a Lombok hotel when the quake struck.

"We were knocked certainly to the floor", he told Sydney radio 2GB on Monday. "We were pretty lucky to get out".

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