Earthquake in Indonesia


October 15, 2018

On Sept. 28, 2018, a massive earthquake occurred in Indonesia. A series of earthquakes reaching 7.5 magnitude hit the state of Indonesia, generating a devastating tsunami. More than 1,400 people were killed and the death toll is likely to rise. More than 5,000 people are reported missing and roughly 2,000 are injured.

The towns of Baleroa and Petobo were hit badly. Most of the buildings and homes began to move and slide down street due to the effect of soil liquefaction. This is a process where the soil becomes saturated with water, causing it to erupt into torrents that topple buildings. Most of the buildings and homes were destroyed and covered with mud. In the town of Petobo, the ground under the length of an entire main road was torn up, with the tide of soil leaving broken stretches of tarmac-topped debris in wave-shaped mounds and troughs.

Over 1,000 homes were buried under river soil. Approximately up to 82,000 civilians and volunteers continue in the search and rescue effort. Even after the traumatic aftermath of the earthquake there are still reports of aftershocks. Thousands of people are in need of food and shelter after their homes and gardens were washed away. Residents rushed to find soiled ground because of soil liquefaction. Within 10 minutes of the earthquake waves reached up to 6 meters in height washing sand, boats and cars onto roads. Survivors say they heard no sirens, even though a tsunami warning was issued and then lifted 34 minutes after the earthquake.

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