Strong Quake Rocks East Timor
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) _ A strong earthquake jolted East Timor in eastern Indonesia Sunday, reportedly killing one person, injuring 20 and badly damaging the harbor in the city of Dili.
The quake, with a magnitude of 5.6, struck Dili at 6:33 p.m. (7:30 a.m. EDT), said Jabar, a spokesman of the Meteorology and Geophysics Agency. It was centered 21 miles beneath the Timor Sea, he said.
The tremor, which lasted for about 10 seconds, shook houses and other buildings in East Timor’s capital, Dili, which is 1,250 miles east of Jakarta. Jabar said he had no immediate reports of casualties or major damage.
But Yacob Herin, a reporter from the East Timor daily newspaper, said 20 people were hospitalized after being hit by falling beams and walls. Many people rushed out of their homes in a panic during the quake, he said.
Dr. Sari Ritonga from a Dili hospital said one quake victim died on the way to the hospital.
The Dili harbor was also badly damaged, Herin said.
An earthquake with a magnitude of 6 can cause severe damage in a populated area.
In December 1992, an earthquake with a magnitude of 7.5 killed at least 2,500 people and destroyed thousands of buildings on Flores Island, near Sunday’s quake area.