A magnitude 6.2 earthquake kills seven people on Indonesia’s Sumatra island

Indonesia’s Pasaman — A strong, shallow earthquake struck the coast of Sumatra, Indonesia on Friday, killing seven people, injuring 85 and panicking in Malaysia, which borders the island.

According to the United States Geological Survey, a magnitude 6.2 earthquake struck about 66 km (41 miles) northwest of Bukittinggi, a hilly area in West Sumatra. It occurred about 12 kilometers (7.4 miles) below the surface of the earth.

Abdul Muhari, a spokesman for the National Disaster Management Agency, said at least four people died in the Pasaman area and three in the area adjacent to West Pasaman near the epicenter, where dozens of houses and buildings were allegedly destroyed. Said. ..

In a statement, Muhari said the quake had fled more than 5,000 people to temporary housing, mainly in the devastated areas of the Pasaman and West Pasaman districts.

“We are still focused on search and rescue operations for the victims,” ​​Muhari said.

Authorities were also investigating the full extent of damage in the affected areas.

Indonesia’s Director-General for Meteorology, Climate and Geophysics, Dwicorita Karnawati, said there was no danger of a tsunami, but warned of possible aftershocks.

According to television reports, there was a strong earthquake that sent panicked people to the streets of Padang, the capital of West Sumatra, and evacuated patients from a hospital in West Sumatra from the building. Other footage showed mud-filled streams, mosques, schools, and some flattened houses from landslides caused by the earthquake.

Muhari told Metro TV that nearly 500 homes and buildings were damaged, 100 of which were seriously damaged.

People in neighboring Malaysia and Singapore also reportedly felt shivering. A video disseminated on social media showed that residents gathered on the street after a few seconds of skyscrapers in Kuala Lumpur shook. Witnesses reported seeing doors and chairs swaying and photographs and paintings trembling on the walls.

Indonesia, a vast archipelago with more than 270 million people, is frequently hit by earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and tsunamis because it is located in the so-called “Ring of Fire”, which is the arc of volcanoes and faults on the Pacific voyage. increase.

In January 2021, a magnitude 6.2 earthquake killed at least 105 people and injured nearly 6,500 in West Sulawesi.

The strong Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami in 2004 killed about 230,000 people in 12 countries, most of them in Indonesia.

By Rahma Nurjana

Associated Press