Indonesia tsunami response

We have a team in Central Sulawesi assessing medical and humanitarian needs in response to the tsunami

Update: 3 October 2018

Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has deployed a local team to Central Sulawesi to conduct an assessment of medical and humanitarian needs in coordination with the national response.

The team, composed of medical, logistics, and water and sanitation specialists, arrived on the afternoon of Tuesday 2 October.

Immediate assessments were carried out, including a visit to Undata Hospital – the regional public hospital – in Talise, Palu City. Here are some findings of the team:

  • Extensive hospital damage: However, it is still operational with patients being treated outside of the building.

  • Services cut: Electricity is down, there is no fuel available, markets and shops are still closed.

  • Insufficient supplies: The airport in Palu is not operational, meaning relief packs and goods must come from other cities such as Mamuju (nine-hour drive) or Makassar (13-hour drive).

    But the distribution route is still not secure. The police or army must escort relief workers.

The current situation

As of 2 October, 1,234 people were confirmed dead, more than 799 have been seriously injured and 99 are still missing.

These figures will increase as more areas become accessible, and the Government conducts more assessments. Buildings, including houses, shops, mosques, and hotels, have collapsed, been swept away, or suffered extensive damage.

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An estimated 66,000 houses have been damaged, and almost 62,000 people have been displaced. People are staying in over 100 sites.

Displaced people are living in tents or have no shelter; reportedly many of those currently in the IDP sites are from outside of the city while many residents have already left Palu.


Liquefaction – a phenomenon in which the strength and stiffness of a soil is reduced by earthquake shaking – has been reported in Petobo village in Palu, with black mud rising up to five metres and reportedly burying one hundred people alive.

Liquefaction has also been reported in south Palu, Biromaru (Sigi district) and Sidera village (Sigi district). Landslides from Toboli to Palu have been reported.