Indonesia Earthquake Death Toll Rises To 844

The death toll in Indonesia has reached 844 following the devastating earthquake last week, with thousands more still trapped under rubble or missing. Officials fear the final number of deaths could be in the thousands.

The 7.5 magnitude quake struck on Friday and triggered a tsunami, which caused massive mud slides that have swallowed up hundreds of homes.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Now, the country is carrying out mass burials in an attempt to stop disease spreading, ABC reports.

Willem Rampangilei, chief of Indonesia's National Disaster Mitigation Agency, told ABC a huge grave, measuring 10m by 100m, will be dug in the city of Palu - one of the worst hit regions.

He added: "This must be done as soon as possible for health and religious reasons."

All of the victims, who will be brought from hospital, have been photographed so their families can find where they have been buried.

Tiopan Aritonang, an army commander, told the news outlet that 545 would be brought from just one hospital.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Meanwhile aid supplies, including water, food and fuel, are running low as roads are so damaged it's proving difficult to bring them in. For now, many people are having to sleep on the street with limited access to food or vital medications, the BBC reports.

Armed police are standing guard outside shops.

According to the BBC, police outside one Palu shop fired shots into the air and opened up tear gas cannisters to keep back crowds of locals. However, within the hour, the area had calmed down and police were slowly letting the crowd back in.

Armed guards are also present at the ports, where aid supplies are being brought in.

The conditions are also making it hard for search and rescue teams to recover bodies.

Ridwan Sobri, a spokesperson for the Indonesian Red Cross, told the BBC: "The mud conditions in that area are terrible, we have to walk about one-and-a-half hours to reach [the mudslide area], that makes it very difficult."

Sources: ABC; BBC; Guardian

Featured Image Credit: PA

Claire Reid

Claire Reid is a journalist at LADbible. Claire graduated from Liverpool John Moores University with a BA in journalism. She’s previously worked at Trinity Mirror. Since joining LADbible, Claire has worked on pieces for the UOKM8? mental health campaign, the Yemen crisis, life in the Calais Jungle as well as a profile of a man who is turning himself into a cyborg.

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