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Fresh quake scares local people on Indonesia's Lombok island

09 Aug 2018, 13:36 ( 10 Months ago)

DF-Xinhua Report
Search And Rescue (SAR) team work at a collapsed mosque in North Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia, Aug. 8, 2018. Photo Xinhua.

The fresh earthquake that jolted the tourist island of Lombok in Indonesia's West Nusa Tenggara (NTB) province on Thursday has scared locals, prompting shops, restaurants and offices to close operations amid fear for more possible aftershocks.

   Strong tremors that lasted around a minute have made panicked people flee out to the streets and stopped the traffic of vehicles in the province's capital of Mataram.

   The 5.9-magnitude quake have cracked ceramic tiles in the walls, detached roof tiles and shattered window glasses of several buildings in the city.

   Panic female employees of businesses on the streets of Pejanggik, the city's business district, were seen holding to each other outside buildings, expecting for possible worse situation that may follow the quake.

   Some of them were seen crying while sitting in the street tarmac and consoled by others around.

   Guests of hotels in the district fled from their rooms without carrying anything but the clothes that they wore when the earthquake struck. 

   The jolts felt in the city was triggered by a 5.9-magnitude earthquake, centered 6 km northwest of North Lombok regency, the hardest hit area by Sunday's 7.0-magnitude earthquake.

   A female employee of a restaurant said she was still haunted by the horrible strong shocks from Sunday night's earthquake.

   "This situation can happen anytime. I already saw the scariest moment in my life in Sunday's earthquake with aftershocks that continued to happen. I think I need to get used to it as it can happen anytime," Santi Ernawati, the 26-year-old restaurant cashier, told Xinhua in the district.

   She and other people were told by security guards of a hotel to stay outside for several minutes to assure that tremors are not happening again.

   Later on, her restaurant, shops and several other businesses in the district closed their operation due to the mess inside the buildings caused by the strong tremors.

   In a statement to respond to the fresh earthquake in NTB province, Indonesia's National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) said that it was part of aftershocks following the 7.0-magnitude earthquake on Sunday in Lombok.

   "Epicenter of the earthquake was in the same underground layer that caused the 7.0-magnitude earthquake on Sunday. It was part of Flores tectonic movement around the island," BNPB spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said.

   In its response to the latest aftershock in Lombok, Indonesia's Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) said aftershocks in the province may continue until the next four weeks. The agency added that a total of 355 aftershocks have been recorded in Lombok since the powerful one on Sunday.