A 5.6-magnitude earthquake in Indonesia left at least 56 dead



CNN

At least 56 people have died after a 5.6-magnitude earthquake jolted the Indonesian province of West Java on Monday, according to the provincial governor.

West Java Governor Ridwan Kamil said more than 700 were also injured.

“There are still a lot of residents trapped in the accident sites, and we assume that the casualties, the injured and the dead will continue to increase over time,” Kamel said.

The quake hit the Cianjur district in West Java at a depth of 10 kilometers (6.2 miles), according to the US Geological Survey.

The local office of the National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) said four schools and 52 homes collapsed or were badly damaged. A mosque and a hospital were also damaged, according to the agency.

Reuters reported that the bank said there was no danger of a tsunami.

Hermann Sehrmann, a government official in Cianjur, told the media that some residents were trapped under the rubble of collapsed buildings. Metro TV news channel showed what appeared to be hundreds of victims being treated in the hospital’s parking garage.

Municipal officers in Cianjur evacuate an injured colleague in the aftermath of the earthquake.

It said an Islamic boarding school was also damaged, while communications were disrupted due to power outages.

Television footage showed residents huddled outside buildings that were almost completely reduced to rubble, according to Reuters.

One of them, whose name was only Mochlis, said he felt a “strong tremor” and the walls and ceiling of his office were damaged.

“I was very shocked. Mochliss told Metro TV.

BMKG warned of the danger of landslides, especially in the event of heavy rains, as 25 aftershocks were recorded in the two hours following the earthquake.

The collapsed Cianjur School building in the aftermath of the earthquake.

Speaking at a press conference, Governor Kamel said the death toll was likely to rise further.

Currently, rescuers are unable to reach some of the trapped people, he said, adding that the situation remains chaotic with the possibility of more aftershocks in the future.

Kamel added that government authorities are currently building tents and shelters for the victims while meeting their basic needs.

Indonesia sits on the “Ring of Fire,” a band around the Pacific Ocean that experiences frequent earthquakes and volcanic activity. One of the most seismically active regions on the planet, it stretches from Japan and Indonesia on one side of the Pacific Ocean all the way to California and South America on the other side.

In 2004, a 9.1-magnitude earthquake off the island of Sumatra in northern Indonesia triggered a tsunami that struck 14 countries, killing 226,000 people along the Indian Ocean coast, more than half of them in Indonesia.

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