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**44-Update** —Indonesia earthquake toll rises as survivors await relief
A second Indonesian earthquake struck near the city of Padang Thursday as the death toll rose to at least 529. Some residents, fearing aftershocks, sought safety outside despite monsoon rains. Read more here:
CNN—A major earthquake in Indonesia killed at least 75 people Wednesday, according to a Red Cross disaster report, citing an official report from the country’s vice president.
Earlier in the day an official said the quake toll was at least 21, with hundreds more injured.
Thousands may be trapped by collapsed buildings and houses, said Rustam Pakaya, the head of Ministry of Health’s crisis center.
He said 75 people were seriously injured.
The quake caused widespread power and phone outages, making it difficult to assess the scope of the damage.
It struck at around 5 p.m. local time, about 33 miles (53 kilometers) from Padang, the capital city of West Sumatra. Padang is home to more than 800,000 people.
The earthquake, which had a magnitude of 7.6, according to the U.S Geological Survey, caused widespread power and phone outages, making it difficult for authorities and aid organizations to evaluate damage.
“The situation is quite devastating,” said Amelia Merrick, the operations director for World Vision Indonesia.
“Bridges have gone down, phone lines are in total disrepair; it’s difficult for us to assess the situation,” she said. The organization had said it would send assessment teams to the area Thursday morning.
“We know there’s no electricity tonight… many of the families will be spending the night outdoors, in pitch black. I’m very afraid of what might happen next,” she said, referring to the possibility of aftershocks.
State-run Antara news agency cited Pakaya as saying he had received reports that part of a hospital had collapsed and that people were buried under the debris.
More @ CNN