Third strong earthquake shakes Lombok as death toll tops 300

ANDI JATMIKO – August 8, 2018

TANJUNG, Indonesia (AP) — The Indonesian island of Lombok was shaken by a third big earthquake in little more than a week Thursday as the official death toll from an earlier quake topped 300.

The strong aftershock, measured at magnitude 5.9 by the U.S. Geological Survey, caused panic, damage to buildings, landslides and injuries. It was centered in the northwest of the island and didn’t have the potential to cause a tsunami, Indonesia’s geological agency said.

Videos showed rubble strewn across streets and clouds of dust enveloping buildings. In northern Lombok, some people leaped from their vehicles on a traffic jammed road while an elderly woman standing in the back of a pickup truck wailed “God is Great.” An Associated Press reporter in the provincial capital Mataram saw people injured by the tremor and a hospital moved patients outside.

The aftershock had caused more “trauma,” said national disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho.

Wiranto, Indonesia’s top security minister, told reporters the death toll from Sunday’s magnitude 7.0 quake had risen to 319. The announcement came after an inter-agency meeting was called to resolve wildly different figures from different agencies.

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