28 September, 2018 28 September, 2018

Indonesian Earthquake Triggers Tsunami


This is a developing story; please check back frequently for more information**

An earthquake reaching a magnitude of 7.5 has triggered a Tsunami causing major damage on Sulawesi Island, Indonesia. Waves reaching 10-feet have swept away houses in at least two cities not long after authorities had lifted a tsunami warning. The tsunami hit Palu, the capital of central Sulawesi province, as well as the smaller city of Donggala and several other coastal settlements.

Videos on social media depict people in hysteria running in panic. Last month, a series of earthquakes struck the Indonesian island of Lombok, killing hundreds of people.  Disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho reported communications and power to the area were disrupted. “The cut to telecommunications and darkness are hampering efforts to obtain information. All national potential will be deployed, and tomorrow morning we will deploy Hercules and helicopters to provide assistance in tsunami-affected areas”

At least 30 people have been reported dead so far. A photographer for the AFP news agency at the scene said that scores of people had been killed. It is not clear whether the deaths came in the quake or the resulting tsunami.

According to the US Geological Survey, the main quake was relatively shallow in preliminary observations as it hit just off central Sulawesi at a depth of 10km  just before 18:00 (11:00 GMT). A tsunami warning was issued and then subsequently lifted within the hour.


Map showing the epicentre of the earthquake near Sulawesi island in Indonesia
Presentational white space

Indonesia’s meteorology and geophysics agency (BMKG) head, Dwikorita Karnawati, announced that the tsunami had receded. Dwikorita Karnawati, “The situation is chaotic, people are running on the streets and buildings collapsed. There is a ship washed ashore,” Karnawati, added.

Fourteen years ago a tsunami by way of an earthquake just off the island of Sumatra killed 226,000 across the Indian Ocean,  120,000 in Indonesia. Due to its geographic location, Indonesia is highly prone to earthquakes as it is within the Pacific Ring of Fire, an area that experiences frequent quakes and volcanic eruptions. Over half of the earths active volcanoes above sea level are part of the ring.

A boy walking in front of a collapsed house after a 6.1 magnitude earthquake that hit in Donggala, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia, 28 September 2018.

1 Comment

  1. Kate
    28 September, 2018 at 9:36 pm · Reply

    Scary! Will be following this story for updates. Thoughts with all those affected.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *