PANDEGLANG, Indonesia – A tsunami killed at least 222 people and injured hundreds more on the Indonesian islands of Java and Sumatra following a volcanic eruption, officials and media said on Sunday.
The tsunami injured 843 more as the wave came crashing ashore late Saturday on the eastern side of Java, one of the large islands comprising the country, according to Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, head of public relations for the Indonesian National Disaster Mitigation Agency.
The number of dead and injured are both likely to rise.
Hundreds of homes and other buildings were “heavily damaged” after struck by the tsunami following an underwater landslide believed caused by the erupting Anak Krakatau volcano.
Jumlah korban dan kerusakan akibat tsunami di Selat Sunda per 23/12/2018 pukul 16.00 WIB tercatat 222 orang meninggal dunia, 843 orang luka-luka & 28 orang hilang. Kerusakan fisik: 556 unit rumah rusak, 9 unit hotel rusak berat, 60 warung kuliner rusak, 350 kapal-perahu rusak. pic.twitter.com/7esz00fnD7
— Sutopo Purwo Nugroho (@Sutopo_PN) December 23, 2018
Pandeglang, Serang and South Lampung on the island of Java were the hardest-hit regions, according to authorities. The regions are a few hours west of the capital city of Jakarta with its population of almost 10 million people.
Emergency teams from national agencies were yet to arrive on site and local agencies doing their best to cope with disaster.
Krakatau, a volcano located between the islands of Java and Sumatra, is known for the historic eruption in 1883 that blew the island apart and killed 30,000 people, but it has erupted regularly since.
The timing of the tsunami, over the Christmas holiday season, evoked memories of the Indian Ocean tsunami triggered by an earthquake on Dec. 26 in 2004, which killed 226,000 people in 14 countries, including more than 120,000 in Indonesia.