Indonesian earthquake: boy pulled alive from rubble in West Java

Jakarta, Indonesia

A six-year-old boy was pulled alive from the rubble of a property on Wednesday after living for more than two days under the rubble, giving hope to those waiting for news from loved ones following a massive earthquake in a densely populated area in western Indonesia. province of Java.

Indonesia’s National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) said rescuers rescued Maulan Malik’s Azka in Nagrak village in Kugenang district of Cianjur district. The footage captures the moment he was found by the rescue team.

According to the agency, the boy was found next to the body of his grandmother. According to local media reports, Azka is now being treated at Chanjur Hospital. Earlier, the department added that the rescuers carried out the bodies of his parents.

A magnitude 5.6 earthquake hit the Chanjur region of West Java at approximately 1:21 p.m. local time on Monday at a depth of 10 kilometers (6.2 miles), causing buildings to collapse while studying, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS). at school. classes were going on.

Indonesia's National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) said they rescued Azka in the village of Nagrak.

The death toll from the earthquake has risen to 271, said Major S. Gen, head of the BNPB. Suharyanto said at a press conference on Wednesday. According to him, more than a third of the confirmed dead are children.

He added that about 2,043 people were injured and 61,800 people were forced to leave their homes. Forty people remain missing.

Suharyanto said 56,320 houses were damaged, more than a third of them seriously. Other damaged buildings included 31 schools, 124 places of worship and three medical facilities.

The agency has built 14 refugee shelters with facilities for the displaced, Suharyanto said. Victims are expected to leave their makeshift tents and move into these main shelters, he said.

BNPB deployed more than 6,000 rescuers to conduct search and rescue operations, Suharyanto said.

A villager looks at damaged houses in Chianjur on November 22, 2022.

The scale of the loss of life and destruction caused by the quake became more apparent on Tuesday after officials previously reported discrepancies in casualty numbers.

Photos show buildings that have been reduced to rubble, and bricks and scrap metal are strewn across the streets.

“So many incidents have happened in several Islamic schools,” West Java Governor Ridwan Kamil told reporters on Monday, warning that many of those killed were children.

Villagers collect items from houses damaged by a 5.6 magnitude earthquake in Chianjur on November 22, 2022.

The violent aftershocks forced children to flee their classrooms and affected more than 50 schools, according to relief organization Save the Children.

Mia Sakharosa, a teacher at one of the schools, said the earthquake “was a shock to all of us,” the organization said.

“We all gathered in the field, the children were terrified and crying, worrying about their families at home,” Sakharosa said. “We hug each other, strengthen each other and continue to pray.”

Municipality officials in Chianjur evacuate an injured colleague after an earthquake.

Herman Sucherman, a government official in Chianjur, told the media that some residents were trapped in the rubble of collapsed buildings. News channel Metro TV showed hundreds of victims being treated in a hospital parking lot.

According to Reuters, television footage shows residents huddled around buildings, almost completely reduced to rubble.

Visiting earthquake-hit areas on Tuesday, Indonesian President Joko Widodo said the government would provide compensation of up to $3,200 to each owner of a badly damaged home.

He added that the houses should be rebuilt into earthquake-resistant buildings.

One resident named Mukhlis said he felt “violent shaking” and that the walls and ceiling of his office were damaged.

“I was very shocked. I was afraid that there would be another earthquake,” he told Metro TV.

The Indonesian Bureau of Meteorology BMKG warned of the danger of landslides, especially in case of heavy rain, as 25 aftershocks were recorded in the first two hours after the earthquake.

Workers inspect a school damaged by the earthquake in Chianjur, West Java.

A school building in Chanjur that collapsed after an earthquake.

US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin expressed “deepest condolences” for the loss of life, speaking Tuesday at the ASEAN multilateral meeting in Cambodia.

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

In 2004, a 9.1 magnitude earthquake off the island of Sumatra in northern Indonesia triggered a tsunami that hit 14 countries, killing 226,000 people along the Indian Ocean coast, more than half of them in Indonesia.