6 dead, Solomon island villages destroyed by tsunami
SYDNEY — Six bodies, including a child's, have been found in the sodden wreckage left by a tsunami that smashed into villages in the Solomon Islands, flattening dozens of homes in the South Pacific island chain.
The nearly 5-foot waves that roared inland on Wednesday on Santa Cruz Island, in the eastern Solomons, were too fast to outrun for five elderly villagers and one child, who died after being sucked under the rushing water, George Herming, a spokesman for the prime minister, said on Thursday.
Several other people were missing, and dozens of strong aftershocks were keeping frightened villagers from returning to the coast, Herming said.
“People are still scared of going back to their homes because there's nothing left, so they are residing in temporary shelters on higher ground,” Herming said.
The tsunami was generated by a powerful 8.0-magnitude earthquake that struck near the town of Lata, on Santa Cruz in Temotu, the easternmost province in the Solomons. Temotu has a population of about 30,000.
Smaller waves were recorded in Vanuatu and New Caledonia.
The damage appeared to be concentrated to the west side of Santa Cruz, with five villages wiped out, Herming said. Authorities were struggling to reach the remote area but said an estimated 100 homes were damaged.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
- Iraqi fighter jet drops bomb over Baghdad, kills 12 people
- Little hope of survivors in Indonesian plane crash
- Egyptian president plans tougher legal system in speech at burial of prosecutor
- Famine nears in Yemen; deadly blasts continue
- Tunisia imposes state of emergency after terrorist attacks
- Draft accords of sanctions relief at Iran nuclear talks in hand
- U.S.-led coalition unleashes wave of airstrikes on Raqqa, Syria
- Iran nuclear deal teeters on ‘hard choices,’ Kerry says
- Fans cheer as Princess Charlotte christened on British royal estate in Sandringham
- Egypt claims to kill 63 terrorists in North Sinai
- Wildfires break out in Spain, Portugal