Rescue members transfer a body at a collapsed hotel in Palu, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. (Photo: Xinhua/ VNA)

Jakarta (VNA) – Indonesia announced on October 5 the death toll from a powerful earthquake and tsunami that struck the country’s Central Sulawesi province a week ago has swollen to 1,558.

As rescue and recovery efforts continue, power supply has been restored in some areas while many shops have re-opened.

According to the Indonesian National Disaster Mitigation Agency, 113 people are still unaccounted for and the number of people displaced reached 70,821.

Palu, the capital of Central Sulawesi, and the nearby coastal town of Donggala are the two worst-hit areas which saw most of the deaths after bearing the brunt of the tsunami waves up to 6 metres high.

As many survivors still desperately wait for basic supplies and other kinds of help, many shops, minimarts and even vehicles carrying humanitarian assistance have been looted.

The Indonesian Red Cross (PMI) said people can access the Restoring Family Links (RFL) website or visit its office in Palu to submit reports of missing relatives.

The website allows people to independently fill out digital forms to let others know that they are alive, and/or to inform the public of missing relatives.

Central Sulawesi was ravaged by two devastating quakes measuring 6.1 and 7.5 on the Richter scale on September 28. The second was followed by giant tsunami waves on the afternoon of the same day, destroying thousands of houses and roads.

The United Nations said that nearly 200,000 Indonesians, including tens of thousands of children, are in need of urgent aid.

Indonesia is frequently struck by earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and tsunamis because of its location on the "Ring of Fire", an arc of volcanoes and fault lines in the Pacific Basin.

A series of earthquakes in July and August killed nearly 500 people on the holiday island of Lombok, hundreds of kilometres southwest of Sulawesi.

In December 2004, a massive 9.1-magnitude earthquake off the northern Indonesian island of Sumatra triggered a tsunami across the Indian Ocean countries, killing 220,000 people in 13 countries, including more than 168,000 in Indonesia. –VNA