Indonesia: heavy rains hamper rescue of quake victims hinh anh 1There are fears the death toll will rise further (Photo:

Jakarta (VNA) - Torrential rains have hampered the search for victims in an earthquake in Indonesia’s Sulawesi island which killed at least 73 and left thousands homeless.

Excavators and cranes were deployed across the devastated seaside city of Mamuju, which suffered the 6.2-magnitude quake on January 15.

It was unclear how many people - dead or alive - could still be under the mountains of debris in the aftermath.

Local police have deployed sniffer dogs to help in the search at a badly damaged hospital.
Rescuers said that the rain poses risks because damaged buildings could collapse if it gets too heavy, and aftershocks could move them too.

The quake brought in 28 aftershocks, destroyed hundreds of houses and many office buildings, hotels, hospitals and shopping centres in Mamuju city and Majene district.
More than 820 people were injured and about 15,000 left their homes after the quake.

Straddling the so-called Pacific ‘ring of fire’, Indonesia, an archipelago of high tectonic activity, is regularly hit by earthquakes.

In 2018, a devastating 6.2-magnitude quake and tsunami struck the city of Palu, further north in Sulawesi, killing thousands of people./.