Tsunami Death Toll Climbs to Nearly 400 in Indonesia

by Jessica Montevago
Tsunami Death Toll Climbs to Nearly 400 in Indonesia

The tsunami is believed to be triggered by an eruption of the Anak Krakatau volcano. Photo: Shutterstock


As Indonesian government officials and rescue workers continue to search for survivors from Saturday’s tsunami, the death toll has risen to 373 people.

The National Disaster Management Agency said 1,459 more are injured and 128 remain missing after the tsunami hit without warning around the Sunda Strait on Saturday night.

Authorities warn the number could go up as the search mission continues on the hard-hit coastlines of western Java and southern Sumatra islands.

Indonesia’s Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency said an eruption at the Anak Krakatau volcano "triggered a landslide underwater." The volcano lies in the Sunda Strait between Java and Sumatra islands, linking the Indian Ocean and Java Sea. 

“The landslide was analyzed, and the magnitude of the tremor was 3.4 from our analysis,” the agency’s head, Dwikorita Karnawati, told a news conference. Karnawati said there is no system in place to monitor the oceanic impact of volcanic activity, so the sensors gave no warnings.

The worst-affected area was the Pandeglang region of Java's Banten province, which encompasses Ujung Kulon National Park and popular beaches, the disaster agency said. Nine hotels and hundreds of homes were heavily damaged, the Associated Press reported.

Many of the affected areas are popular weekend getaways for residents of Jakarta, Indonesia's capital, but international visitors were also there for the long holiday weekend. A Norwegian photographer and volcano enthusiast posted on Facebook that he had to run to escape the waves while on the beach photographing the volcano.

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