At least 32 people killed by 7.0 quake in Indonesia

Indonesia’s resort islands of Bali and Lombok were rocked by a magnitude 7.0 earthquake overnight, killing at least 32 people and triggering panic, according to officials.

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.

More than 50 people were injured. The tremors prompted a large-scale evacuation of a nearby volcano.

Local disaster official Agung Pramuja said 32 people were confirmed dead, many from northern and western parts of Lombok.

A police official in Mataram in central Lombok said at least one person was killed. A rescue volunteer told local media that three others, including a child, were confirmed dead.

Power cuts were affecting most of the island of Lombok, media cited the head of the local disaster mitigation agency as saying. The extent of damage was not yet clear.

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Travelers at the international airports in Bali and Lombok were thrown into panic and there was minor damage to the buildings, but operations were not disrupted, officials said.

The quake was felt for several seconds in Bali, where people ran out of houses, hotels, and restaurants.

“All the hotel guests were running, so I did too. People filled the streets,” said Michelle Lindsay, an Australian tourist. “A lot of officials were urging people not to panic.”

Other witnesses said the initial quake grew in intensity over several seconds, rattling windows and doors, and there were many aftershocks.

The country’s disaster management agency urged people to stay away from the sea. However, an initial warning of a tsunami with waves of up to half a meter was later withdrawn.

-Reuters