The death toll is likely to rise even further, as victims have not been tallied from two housing complexes outside Palu city which were “swept away and swallowed by mud,” according to Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, spokesman for Indonesia’s National Disaster Mitigation Agency. A process of liquefaction, where hard sand and silt take on the characteristics of liquid, becoming muddy and loose, made electrical poles appear like they were “walking,” according to residents, and “moved houses from one area to another.”
Rescue workers have just begun to reach the region of Donggala where some 300,000 people live. The area is still hard to access due to badly damaged roads, and rescuers doing damage assessments say everything on the coast has been damaged and destroyed. On Tuesday, local television broadcasts showed angry residents screaming at Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo, better known as Jokowi, to ask for help.
As a former colony this natural disaster affects many Dutch people of Indo-European or 100% Indonesian background. I saw reports of Dutch people of Indonesian heritage who lost familymembers there. One Dutch woman said that the house of her aunt and two children the aunt took care of was completely flattened down (demolished/destroyed). No sign of her aunt and the children. They could be dead or they could have escaped, she doesn't know and is very worried about her Indonesian family.