Indonesian Earthquake Death Toll Rises to 27, Emergency Aid Prepared

The number of dead victims from a recent earthquake on the Indonesian island of Alor rose to 27 following the discovery of a body beneath the debris of a building, local news agencies reported Thursday. According to reports, the number of dead victims may still increase after thorough checks have been made at the scene.

The quake, which hit Alor island on Nov. 11, was said to have measured 6.5 on the Richter scale. The provincial meteorological office said the epicenter was about 25 miles east of Kalabahi town, the capital of Alor district.

According to Antara News, the quake damaged almost the area’s entire vital infrastructure, posing an obstacle for emergency teams trying to distribute relief. The province's disaster control unit reported that 13,790 house were totally or partially destroyed.

The news agency also reported that the quake damaged 236 school buildings (63 totally), 364 houses of prayer (161 totally) and 400 state buildings (130 totally). Meanwhile a total of 116 people have been seriously injured after the quake while 119 others lightly. Around 8,000 residents have been left homeless by the quake.

To provide relief for the victims of the quake, World Vision Indonesia (WVI) has prepared around $94,500 (USD) in funding from USAID and WV Canada. World Vision has also begun distributing emergency aid, including medicine, drinking water, rice, instant noodles, mats and other items.

World Vision's Alor Area Development Program (ADP), which has been operating in the area since 1999, is sponsoring 3,455 children. Its main areas of work are in providing education, primary healthcare and income generation activities. World Vision says that there have been no reports that any sponsored children have been hurt by the quake.

Alor—a rocky coral island east of Bali, in the province of East Nusa Tenggara—is just north of Timor Island. It is reportedly one of the poorest areas in Indonesia.