Rescuers scramble in search for Lombok quake survivors as death toll rises

Crack in the ground and rescue workers

The International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in a statement said, "The natural disaster caused widespread panic".

Foreign and domestic tourists fled after Sunday's natural disaster of magnitude 6.9 destroyed homes and displaced tens of thousands of people, adding to the havoc from an earlier quake on 29 July, although of smaller magnitude, at 6.4.

Facebook said the feature was available globally.

"Our hearts go out to the people affected by the natural disaster".

Almost 1,500 people have been hospitalized with serious injuries and more than 156,000 have been displaced due to the extensive damage to thousands of homes.

Twenty-three-year old local man Ghozali who lives in northern Lombok and works on the tourist island of Gili T, slept outside with his extended family on Monday night because of serious structural damage to his home.

In village after village in the north of the island, houses lie in ruins, crushed by their rooves and abandoned by their walls. "He asked me for help, but I couldn't help him, we just ran to help ourselves", Johriah, who like many Indonesians goes by one name, told AFP tearfully.

Indonesia sent rescuers fanning out across the holiday island of Lombok and evacuated more than 2000 tourists.

The quake also affected tourists.

He and his family had briefly returned to their homes, he said, to claim the food and water they could but that was now running out. In December 2004, a massive magnitude 9.1 quake off Sumatra triggered a tsunami that killed 230,000 people in a dozen countries.

More than 20 000 people are believed to have been made homeless on Lombok‚ with 236 severely injured‚ and authorities have appealed for more medical personnel and basic supplies.

"We have yet to ask for help from the worldwide (community)".

Quakes continue to rattle the island, including a 5.5 magnitude tremor at around 2 a.m. (1800 GMT Monday), Indonesia's meteorology and geophysics agency said (BMKG).

Local authorities, worldwide relief groups and the central government have begun organising aid, but shattered roads have slowed efforts to reach survivors in the mountainous north and east of Lombok, which was hardest hit.

Immigration authorities said that seven foreigners - from Belgium, Britain, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, South Korea and the United States - were injured in the quake and are being treated in hospital.

"Hearing about lots of people dying because of this tragedy is very sad", Rankuti said.

Some 800 hikers were nearby when that quake struck and caused parts of a crater ledge and nearby plateau (holding several hikers and guides) at the summit of Mount Rinjani in Lombok to collapse into the volcano's mouth, according to news reports.

"We don't get anything", he said while trying to rescue documents from his house.

The warning was lifted after waves of just 15 centimetres (6 inches) high were recorded in three villages, said Dwikorita Karnawati, the head of Indonesia's Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency.

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