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Watch: Satellite images of earthquake and tsunami that hit the Indonesian Island

Oct 02, 2018 13:46 IST
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Satellite images have revealed the devastating scale of the massive earthquake and tsunami that hit the Indonesian island of Sulawesi. The images, released by DigitalGlobe, show landmarks in the worst-hit city, Palu, all but obliterated.

Indonesia’s disaster agency says the death toll has increased slightly to 1234 - with many of the victims reported in Palu. But much is still unknown about other coastal towns that have yet to be properly assessed due to impassable roads, downed power lines and phone outages. The 7.5 magnitude quake hit at dusk on Friday, creating a tsunami that swept waves ashore reaching as high as six metres (20 feet) in some places. Disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said conditions in the Petobo neighbourhood of Palu city are particularly bad because the quake caused a phenomenon called liquefaction, which occurs when loose water-filled soil near the surface loses its strength and collapses. Nugroho said authorities estimate that “there are still hundreds of victims buried in mud” in the area. Villagers who pulled out loved ones — alive and dead — over the weekend expressed frustration that rescue teams had only reached Petobo on Monday.