Hundreds trapped under rubble after quake


Jakarta, Hundreds of residents of Palu in Indonesia are feared to have been trapped under buildings destroyed by the 7.4-magnitude earthquake that rocked the capital city of Central Sulawesi province on Friday. The death toll from the quake and a tsunami in the province jumped to 384 with 540 people sustaining serious injuries, a disaster management agency official said on Saturday. The figures were only accounted in Palu, while the impacts of the natural disasters in Donggala and its coastal areas which was hit by the tsunami has not been included in the data, Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, spokesman of the national disaster management agency, said. The fate of hundreds who flocked to the Wonderful Palu Nomoni beach festival venue remains unknown after the tsunami hit the area on Friday afternoon.Among the missing are dancers, who were to perform at the annual festival. Reports said as of Saturday morning, the earthquake victims, trapped under the rubble of the destroyed buildings, including the city`s biggest shopping mall, have yet to be evacuated. A worker at Tatura shopping mall told news agency Antara that several people buried under the rubble were yet to be rescued.A total of 14 bodies, retrieved from the Tatura shopping mall, had been carried to the Budi Agung Hospital, while hundreds of wounded survivors were yet to receive medical treatment due to unavailability of doctors. Soldiers, police, disaster management agency personnel and volunteers were evacuating the quake and tsunami victims, said Sutopo.Power outage has cut off local communications which is hampering the relief efforts.