December 4, 2022


The number of people killed by a 5.6 magnitude earthquake in Indonesia’s West Java province has risen to 162, according to the governor.

Around 326 people were also injured, with varying degrees of severity, West Java Governor Ridwan Kamil said at a news conference.

The quake struck the Cianjur region of West Java on Monday at a depth of 10 kilometers (6.2 miles), according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS).

The earthquake displaced 13,782 people – all being housed in 14 refugee camps. At least 2,345 homes were damaged.

According to the local office of the National Agency for Disaster Management (BNPB), four schools and 52 houses collapsed or were badly damaged. According to the agency, a mosque and a hospital were also damaged.

The BNPB said there was no tsunami risk, Reuters reported.

Herman Suherman, a government official in Cianjur, told the media that some residents were trapped in the rubble of collapsed buildings. News channel Metro TV appeared to show hundreds of victims being treated in a hospital parking lot.

5.6 magnitude earthquake in Indonesia kills at least 162

An Islamic boarding school was also said to have been damaged, while communications were cut off due to power outages.

According to Reuters, television footage showed residents huddled in front of buildings that were almost completely reduced to rubble.

One, known only as Muchlis, said he felt “huge shaking” and the walls and ceiling of his office were damaged.

“I was very shocked. I was worried there would be another quake,” Muchlis told Metro TV.

The BMKG warned of the risk of landslides, especially in heavy rain, as 25 aftershocks were registered in the two hours after the quake.

A collapsed school building in Cianjur after the earthquake.

At an earlier press conference, Governor Kamil said the death toll is likely to continue to rise.

“There are still many local residents trapped at the scene of the accident, and we expect the number of injured and dead victims to continue to increase over time,” Kamil said earlier Monday.

Rescuers are currently unable to reach some of those trapped, he said, adding that the situation remains chaotic and the possibility of more aftershocks looms.

Government authorities are currently building tents and shelters for the victims while they take care of their basic needs, Kamil added.

Indonesia lies on the “Ring of Fire,” a band around the Pacific Ocean that triggers frequent earthquakes and volcanic activity. One of the most seismically active zones on earth, it stretches from Japan and Indonesia on one side of the Pacific to California and South America on the other.

In 2004, a magnitude 9.1 quake off the island of Sumatra in northern Indonesia triggered a tsunami that struck 14 countries and killed 226,000 people along the Indian Ocean coast, more than half in Indonesia.