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SULAWESI SUFFERS

The aftermath of Indonesia’s devastating tsunami, which has killed more than 800 people

A ship stranded on the shore of Wani, Donggala on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, after an earthquake and tsunami hit the area,
Antara Foto/Muhammad Adimaja via Reuters
A ship stranded on the shore of Wani, Donggala on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, after an earthquake and tsunami hit the area,
  • Johnny Simon
By Johnny Simon

Deputy Photo Editor

This article is more than 2 years old.

A 7.5 magnitude earthquake on Friday (Sept. 28) on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi triggered a tsunami which as of today (Oct. 1) has killed more than 800 people and left a trail of destruction across the island.

The death toll is likely to keep rising. While the city of Palu has suffered some of the worst damage and most fatalities, remote portions of the island have been cut off from communications, and infrastructure, the BBC reports.

Officials blame the slow rescue response on the lack of machinery needed to clear heavy rubble. The AP reports that the voices of people trapped in the rubble of an eight-story hotel in Palu that collapsed could still be heard as of Sunday evening. NPR notes that relief groups are already stretched thin throughout Indonesia, with some staff currently working on the island of Lombok, which had its own earthquake in August.

Photos from this morning and the previous few days capture the scope of the damage. The view on the ground in Palu is a chaotic mess of flooded and toppled buildings, collapsed bridges, and injured and dead being pulled from wreckage. Thousands of survivors have fled to a local airport in search of food, shelter, or a way off the island. Aerial images underscore just how much the surrounding landscape was altered by the tsunami, which at points brought 20-foot-tall (6 meter) waves.

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