At least six people were killed and dozens injured after a 6.5- magnitude earthquake hit Indonesia’s Maluku province on Thursday, according to senior disaster official.
Two people were killed by falling debris, another died after being buried in a landslide while a woman was killed after falling off her motorbike while fleeing to higher ground, Indonesia’s national disaster mitigation agency and the local search and rescue office said.
The quake struck about 37 kilometres offshore northeast of Ambon in Maluku province at 8:46 am local time, at a depth of 29 kilometres, according to the US Geological Survey.
Terrified people ran into the streets as buildings fell in around them after the quake hit at around 8:45 local time.
Architect Suryanto Soekarno said a construction site where he and his employees were working was rocked by the tremor.”It was a really hard shock”, he told AFP.
“Many people were woken up by the shaking…it felt like a truck was passing by”, he further said.
The US Geological Survey said that the quake struck about 37 kilometres (23 miles) northeast of Ambon in Maluku province at a depth of 29 kilometres.
The Southeast Asian archipelago is one of the most disaster-prone nations on Earth. Indonesia experiences frequent seismic and volcanic activity due to its position on the Pacific “Ring of Fire”, where tectonic plates collide.
In August, five people were killed and several others injured after a powerful undersea earthquake rocked Indonesia’s heavily populated Java island.
Last year, a 7.5-magnitude quake and a subsequent tsunami in Palu on Sulawesi island left more than 4,300 people dead or missing.