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Strong Quake Kills Dozens in Indonesia

Many others are trapped in collapsed buildings
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jan 15, 2021 12:20 AM CST

(Newser) – A strong, shallow earthquake shook Indonesia's Sulawesi island just after midnight, toppling homes and buildings, triggering landslides and killing at least 34 people. More than 600 people were injured during the magnitude 6.2 quake early Friday, which sent people fleeing their homes in the darkness, the AP reports. Authorities are still collecting information about the full scale of casualties and damage in the affected areas. There were reports of many people trapped in the rubble of collapsed homes and buildings. In a video released by the National Disaster Mitigation Agency, a girl stuck in the wreckage of a house cried out for help and said she heard the sound of other family members also trapped. "Please help me, it hurts," the girl told rescuers, who replied that they desperately wanted to help her.

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The rescuers said an excavator was needed to save the girl and others trapped in collapsed buildings. The quake was centered 22 miles south of West Sulawesi province’s Mamuju district, at a depth of 11 miles, the US Geological Survey said. The Indonesian disaster agency said the death toll climbed to 34 as rescuers in Mamuju retrieved 26 bodies trapped in rubble. The agency said in a statement that eight people were killed and 637 others were injured in Mamuju's neighboring district of Majene. It said at least 300 houses and a health clinic were damaged and about 15,000 people were being housed in temporary shelters in the district. Power and phones were down in many areas.

(Read more Indonesia stories.)

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