JAKARTA, Indonesia: The popular Indonesian resort island of Lombok, already under a weeklong state of emergency, was struck once again on Sunday by a powerful earthquake. At least 82 people were killed in the quake, which was also felt on Bali, just to the west, the country’s National Disaster Management Board said.
Television footage showed panicked residents and tourists fleeing to safety on both islands, especially after a warning that the quake and major aftershocks could cause a tsunami.
Most of the people killed in the magnitude-7.0 quake, which was first announced as a magnitude 6.8 and then revised upward, were from the northern and western regions of Lombok.
The quake occurred in the early evening. Minutes later, a magnitude-5.6 aftershock jolted the region again. It was the first of a wave of about a dozen aftershocks. Thousands fled from their homes to gather in emergency shelters in open spaces, the disaster agency said.
At the international airports on Lombok and Bali, buildings sustained minor damage, Reuters reported, but operations were not disrupted, officials said.
The law and home affairs minister of Singapore, K. Shanmugam, who was in Mataram, the capital of Lombok Island, when the quake struck, said on Facebook that his 10th-floor hotel room had shaken violently and the walls had cracked.
“It was quite impossible to stand up. Heard screams,” he wrote. “Came out, and made my way down a staircase, while building was still shaking. Power went out for a while. Lots of cracks, fallen doors.”
Najmul Akhyar, the district chief of North Lombok, initially told Metro TV that at least three people had been killed, according to The Associated Press. Mr. Akhyar said, however, that because of an electrical blackout, he did not know whether there were other casualties.