A 14-day state of emergency has been declared by the Central Sulawesi administration as recovery efforts continue on the island as of Monday, October 1. According to the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB), the period will be in affect from September 28 through Thursday, October 11. Indonesian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo also announced on Sunday, September 30, that the country will accept international aid for disaster response and relief in Palu and the Donggala regency which were devastated by the September 28 earthquake and tsunami. According to media reports on Monday afternoon (local time), the death toll has risen to at least 1203; officials believe the casualty count will continue to rise as rescue and recovery efforts continue. Over 16,700 people were also displaced.
Communication and transportation disruptions are also ongoing in the area. The state-run telecommunications company PT Telkom and mobile operator Telkomsel announced on October 1 that they are offering free internet access points and telephone service for Palu, Donggala, and the surround area. However, the widespread damage may continue to cause disruptions to communication services in in the coming days. According to media reports, Palu is still without power as of Monday. Flights into Mutiara SIS Al-Jufri Airport (PLX) in Palu are limited and priority is being given to search and rescue and relief aircraft. Overland travel to Central Sulawesi remains limited due to landslides and damage to bridges. Aftershocks as large as 5.1-magnitude have continued into the morning (local time) of September 30. Further quakes and associated damage are possible in the coming days.
A 7.5-magnitude earthquake occurred in Central Sulawesi province around 18:02 on Friday, September 28, approximately 81 km (50 mi) north of Palu at a depth of 10 km (6.2 mi), causing a tsunami around 2 m (6 ft) high that struck the west coast of Sulawesi and Palu. A total of 29 earthquakes have struck the area since Friday morning.
Indonesia lies within the active seismic zone known as "the Pacific Ring of Fire."
Individuals present in the impacted region are advised to monitor the situation, be prepared for further aftershocks, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities. Individuals elsewhere in Indonesia are advised to defer all travel to the affected areas until further notice.
During an earthquake, individuals are advised to protect themselves as much as possible from falling debris if indoors (e.g. under a table), to move away from windows and exterior walls, and do not attempt to leave the building unless there is an immediate danger. If outdoors, move away from any tall structures, such as buildings, utility wires, and streetlights.
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