A magnitude 6.2 earthquake on Indonesia’s Sulawesi island killed at least seven people and injured hundreds more on Thursday, the National Disaster Mitigation Agency said.
To date, the agency has reported that four people have died and 637 others have been injured in Majene, while three others have been killed and at least 20 injured in neighboring Mamuju province.
Several buildings, including hotels and the governor’s seat, suffered extensive damage in Mamuju, which has a population of around 110,000. At least ten people were trapped in the rubble of a destroyed hospital, Mamuju’s rescuer told AFP news agency.
“The hospital is destroyed. It collapsed. There are patients and people from the hospital in prison,” he said.
The earthquake was felt strongly for about seven seconds, but it did not trigger a tsunami warning — according to the United States Institute of Geophysics, the epicenter was 11 miles deep and s ‘occurred at 2:18 a.m. local time on Friday (15).
Videos on social media showed residents fleeing to higher grounds on motorcycles and a child trapped under rubble as people attempted to remove the debris with their bare hands.
Indonesia’s disaster agency said a series of earthquakes in the past 24 hours had caused at least three landslides. Earlier Thursday, another 5.8 magnitude earthquake had already struck the region, without causing significant damage.
Indonesia is located in the region known as the Pacific Ring of Fire, with intense seismic activity due to the meeting between tectonic plates, regularly hit by earthquakes.
In 2018, a devastating magnitude 6.2 earthquake, followed by a tsunami, struck the town of Palu in Sulawesi, killing thousands.