An aftershock and moderately strong earthquake struck Bali, Indonesia’s resort island. It killed at least three people and destroyed dozens of homes.
People ran outside in panic when the quake struck just before sunrise. It occurred just as the island had begun to reopen for tourism, as the pandemic is over.
According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the magnitude 4.8 earthquake was located 62 km (38.5 miles) northeast Singaraja (a Bali port city). The earthquake’s shallow depth of only 10 km (6.2 miles) may have increased the damage.
A magnitude 4.3 aftershock followed. The quake measured 282 km (174 miles) in depth.
Photos of the island show homes that were buried under rocks and mud, buildings that collapsed and walls that crumbled to the ground.
Gede Darmada is the head of the Search and Rescue Agency on the island. He said that the agency was still gathering updates about casualties and damage.
Aside from the three confirmed deceased, at least seven others were reported to have been injured, including head injuries and broken bones.
Darmada stated that the earthquake caused landslides in a hilly area, killing at most two people and cutting access to at least three other villages.
He said that it toppled temples and homes in Karangasem near the epicenter, killing a 3-year old girl who was struck by falling debris.
“Nearly 60%” of houses in the village of Bunga, Karangasem were destroyed and cannot be lived in,” stated I Nengah Kertawa. This is one of the hardest-hit communities.
Trunyan, where houses and government facilities were also damaged, and Kintamani which is a popular tourist destination overlooking a beautiful lake, was also affected.
Bali, also known as the “islandof the gods”, is home to over 4 million mostly Hindus in this predominantly Muslim country. It is known for its beautiful white-sand beaches, majestic volcanoes, and temples.
Thursday’s reopening of the island to international tourists was the first in over a year since Indonesia’s COVID-19 casesload dropped significantly.
After peaking at 56,000 new cases per day in July, the country now has around 1,000 cases per day.
Because of its position on the “Ring of Fire”, an arc of fault lines and volcanoes that runs through the Pacific, Indonesia is a large archipelago of over 270 million people.
The magnitude 6.2 earthquake that struck January killed at least 105 people, and nearly 6,500 others. After the earthquake struck Mamuju, Majene and West Sulawesi provincial districts, more than 92,000 people were forced to flee.