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Jakarta Post

Quake debris cleanup in Lombok needs more excavators

  • Panca Nugraha

    The Jakarta Post

Mataram   /   Wed, September 5, 2018   /   12:49 pm
Quake debris cleanup in Lombok needs more excavators This aerial photo shows a collapsed mosque in the village of Sugian on Lombok Island on Aug. 21, after a series of recent earthquakes. (AFP/Fred Dufour)

The rehabilitation and reconstruction of buildings on Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara, after a series of earthquakes in July and August has started, but with a lack of excavators, progress in debris cleanup is moving slower than expected. 

“A lack of heavy equipment hampers the demolition [process] and debris cleanup. Now, only 8 to 10 percent [of all damaged buildings] has been cleaned up,” the government’s joint task force chief of earthquake mitigation in Lombok, Maj. Gen. Madsuni, said on Tuesday.

Madsuni said an additional 20 excavators were needed to accelerate the cleanup process at 71,000 damaged houses and buildings. Forty-eight excavators have been deployed, 28 of which are privately owned while the remaining 20 are owned by the Indonesian Military (TNI).

Read also: Quake survivors use salvaged materials to build better shelters, rebuild lives

He also said that his side had asked the military for an additional excavator as well as an additional 600 personnel.

“Some local people have been participating [in the rehabilitation process] but probably due to society's limited knowledge, they think it is only the responsibility of the police and the military," said Madsuni.

The government has disbursed Rp 10 million (US$668.6) to Rp 50 million, depending on the level of damage, for each household. The households are expected to build an earthquake-resistant house under the guidance and supervision of the Public Works and Housing Ministry. (sau)