Strong quake hits Indonesia’s Lombok island again amid rescue efforts
Hossen Sohel: Frantic rescue operations have been continuing since Sunday’s earthquake on the Indonesian island of Lombok.
The latest aftershock had a magnitude of 5.9 or 6.2, according to monitors. It brought down some buildings, reports BBC.
Rescue workers are still digging through rubble and trying to get aid to survivors of the earlier, larger quake.
The Red Cross says that incident, which was magnitude 6.9 and killed at least 131, was “exceptionally destructive”.
Some villages had “completely collapsed”, said a Red Cross official in Lombok, Christopher Rassi.
While the official death toll from national authorities stand at 131, provincial officials say 226 people have died. Local media are reporting figures as high as 347.
The government says more than 1,400 people were injured and more than 156,000 displaced.
The national disaster agency has said all those numbers are likely to increase, as more information comes in and more victims are found.
The new tremor hit off the north-west coast of Lombok, sending people running into the streets in panic. No tsunami warning was issued.
Disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho classified it as an aftershock. A British tourist on nearby Bali told the BBC that it had been felt there, causing people to leave their hotel rooms in the southern resort area of Seminyak.
Emergency workers are gradually starting to reach more remote areas of Lombok as they continue their rescue missions.
But Mr Sutopo said some areas in the north had still not received any aid.
Lombok is a roughly 4,500 sq km (1,700 sq miles) island east of the slightly larger island of Bali.
Most people live in basic housing in small communities. Tens of thousands are now sleeping out in the open or in the ruins of their homes.