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Tourists flee Lombok as Indonesian quake death toll rises

Tourists flee Lombok as Indonesian quake death toll rises”

Power and communications were cut in some areas of Lombok, with landslides and a collapsed bridge hampering access to the north.

The Indonesian Military (TNI) has dispatched a hospital ship to Lombok and deployed a medical battalion in the area on Monday.

Peter Dutton who is in Lombok for a counter-terrorism meeting, said the quake "was powerful enough to put us on the floor".

After a 6.1 quake on July 28 that killed many on the Indonesian Tourist Island of Lombok a 7.1-magnitude natural disaster on Sunday night made this situation so much worse.

The powerful quake struck at a depth of 10.5 kilometers off the north coast of Lombok, a little over a mile from Loloan village, on Sunday night local time, the USGS said.

The United States Geological Survey slightly downgraded Sunday's quake after initially calling it 7.0-magnitude.

"Data collection continues and (rescue) efforts are still ongoing", Nugroho told a news conference, adding that there were no foreigners among the victims so far.

The National Board for Disaster Management said two people died in Bali.

The tremor was also felt on Bali to the west.

Indonesia is prone to earthquakes because it lies on the Ring of Fire - the line of frequent quakes and volcanic eruptions that circles virtually the entire Pacific rim.

In 2004, a devastating tsunami triggered by a magnitude 9.3 undersea quake off the coast of Sumatra in western Indonesia killed 220,000 people in countries around the Indian Ocean, including 168,000 in Indonesia.

"There were aftershocks, which caused people to scream and shout".

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade said the New Zealand Embassy in Jakarta was working to get more information following today's natural disaster on the island.

"We can not evacuate all of them all at once because we don't have enough capacity on the boats".

Hundreds of bloodied and bandaged victims were treated outside damaged hospitals in the main city of Mataram and other hard-hit parts of the island.

Sengiggi, a seaside tourist strip on Lombok, wore an abandoned look. Amid collapsed houses, some hotels appeared to have closed, restaurants were empty and beaches deserted.

The Bali and Lombok airports have stayed open.

One of them is Sebastiaan Evans, a British trader, who described his ordeal to the ABC as he waited for the Indonesian Navy to arrive.

"There was pretty violent shaking, people fell to ground, and it was fairly prolonged then there was a massive power outage", he told RNZ.

"It was quite impossible to stand up".

Garuda Indonesia vice president corporate secretary Hengki Heriandono said in a statement that he hoped the additional flights would help people wishing to leave Lombok for Bali.

"This is it for me in Indonesia". There had been a half hour evacuation at the Lombok airport following the quake because the electricity went off. TV showed crying women consoling each other outside Lombok's airport.



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