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Hundreds Killed and Thousands Evacuated after Indonesia is hit by Earthquake & Tsunami

  • Indonesian island of Sulawesi was hit by a major (7.5 magnitude) earthquake followed by a massive tsunami, killing at least 384 people. Reports say following the earthquake, 18 feet (6 meters) high waves crashed onto beaches in Palu at dusk where hundreds of people had gathered on Friday to celebrate a festival. Indonesia’s disaster mitigation agency BNPB’s spokesperson, Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, said when the tsunami rose, people didn’t realize its intensity and carried on with their activities. He went on to say that the tsunami travelled at a speed of 800 kph (497 mph) before it struck the shoreline. It “dragged cars, logs, houses” and everything with itself when it struck the land. Over 16,700 people have been reportedly evacuated to 24 centers in Palu.