BANDA ACEH, Indonesia – Soldiers, police and volunteers fanned out across an earthquake-damaged region of western Indonesia today, scouring the debris of fallen homes and landslides for possible victims of a temblor that killed at least 22 people and injured hundreds.
The magnitude-6.1 quake struck Tuesday afternoon at a depth of just 6 miles and was centered on the far western tip of Sumatra island in Aceh province.
Twelve people were killed and 70 others were injured by a landslide or collapsing buildings in Bener Meriah district, said Sutopo Purwo Nugroho of the National Disaster Mitigation Agency.
In neighboring Central Aceh district, 10 people were killed, 140 were injured and about 1,500 houses and buildings were damaged, Nugroho said. The quake also triggered landslides and caused hundreds of people to be evacuated to 10 temporary shelters.
Rescuers and other assistance teams arrived in Bener Meriah, while the air force have dispatched a helicopter and a CN-235 aircraft to the region.
“We are now concentrating on searching for people who may be trapped under the rubble,” said Rusli M. Saleh, the deputy district chief of Bener Meriah.
He said at least 25 of the injured in his district were hospitalized in intensive care.