Indonesia natural disaster: aid begins to arrive as death toll rises

People affected by the earthquake rest at a temporary shelter in Lombok Indonesia Sunday Aug. 5 2018. —AP

French tourist Laurent Smadja, who had been on Gilli Meno, the smallest of the three islands, described scenes of chaos and confusion in the aftermath of the quake as holidaymakers jostled to leave.

The body of 60-year-old Abdul Malik, one of at least 105 people killed in the 7.0-magnitude quake, would have to stay under the rubble for a third day.

'We still have no wifi and very little power. "But to see the aftermath today is heart breaking (as) 16 hotel staff have lost their homes".

Indonesian authorities are struggling to get help to people hit hardest, according to Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, a spokesman for the National Disaster Mitigation Agency, BNPB, because of the difficult conditions rescuers face.

The death toll is expected to rise, with one official telling reporters that 80 per cent of north Lombok has suffered damage. More than 156,000 people were displaced by the quake.

With their children, Brooklyn, 19, Romeo, 15, Cruz, 13, and Harper, seven, reportedly in tow, it has been claimed the family was 60 miles from the epicentre of the quake. We are all frustrated to live like this - in a tent without certainty.

"(It) was mayhem", she said.

The shaking caused walls to collapse, roofs to cave in and people literally ran for the hills, fearful a tsunami might follow.

"I absolutely wouldn't change one single thing", she said. She said the hotel occupants have now been moved to a holding room in the building.

Dwikorita Karnawati, head of the agency for meteorology, climatology and geophysics, told local TV: 'Please go to a place with higher ground, while remaining calm and not panicking'.

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Aid began reaching isolated areas of the Indonesian island struggling after a powerful natural disaster that killed more than 130 people as rescuers intensified efforts Wednesday to find those buried in the rubble.

"There are only a few tourists left here".

She live tweeted the quake to her 10.6m followers. "We just want to get off Lombok".

Montgomery-Lay said they have reached out to the Canadian Consulate, but were told there was nothing officials could do to help them yet.

"There are no flights and the airport looks like mayhem", she said.

A Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade spokesperson said 770 New Zealanders were registered on SafeTravel as being in Indonesia, 25 of them in Lombok.

The proceeds from crafts and rendang, a savoury meat dish, sold at the Indonesian pavilion will go toward supporting thousands of people displaced by the natural disaster. "The Department is in contact with the South African Embassy in Jakarta‚ Indonesia‚ in order to provide consular assistance to the South African citizens should it be required".

A large number of foreign and local tourists are still waiting to be evacuated from popular tourist island Gili Trawangan Island in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, and some are faced with dehydration.

The Bali and Lombok airports have remained open. But she said the family is going to try to get on a ferry to Bali on Tuesday and that their flight back to B.C.is on August 13.

"We estimate there are still more victims because we found many sandals in front of the mosque", Nugroho said Tuesday.

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