Indonesia: Sulawesi Earthquakes and Tsunami, Emergency Plan of Action (EPoA) update n° MDRID013


Description of the disaster

Updated information on damages and impacts of the disaster.

On 28 September 2018, a series of strong earthquakes struck Central Sulawesi Province. The strongest of which measured at 7.4 magnitude and 10km deep with the epicenter in Donggala Regency, close to the provincial capital Palu. The earthquake triggered a tsunami which reached up to three meters in some areas, striking Talise beach in Palu and Donggala shores. The earthquakes, tsunami and resulting liquefaction and landslides caused significant damage and loss of life in affected areas.
As of 18 July 2019, the government reported that 4,140 people died in the disaster, of which 1,016 were not identified; and a further 705 people remain missing. More than 4,400 were seriously injured and more than 100,405 houses destroyed, damaged or lost due to the earthquake, tsunami or liquefaction. Of these, 30,148 houses were severely damaged while more than 4,050 were lost (mainly due to liquefaction). In its wake, almost 173,000 people were displaced.
According to the shelter cluster updates (link) published on 28 February 2020, 66 governmental and non-governmental agencies constructed temporary shelter (collective and individual) for 23,672 households.
More than 320 districts and community-based health facilities plus 1,300 schools were also damaged.
The focus of government response is on the recovery phase.

COVID-19 in Indonesia and Central Sulawesi province

On March 2020, the government declared a state of emergency for COVID-19 as a non-natural disaster in Indonesia. The number of confirmed cases has continued to increase significantly since the announcement of the first two cases in March 2020. Based on Indonesia Ministry of Health data until 10 June 2020, 34,316 people have tested positive, of which 1,959 cases have been fatal. The Indonesian Ministry of Health activated 132 referral hospitals in 33 provinces for COVID-19 case management. The government also established an emergency hospital for COVID-19 quarantine and treatment in Galang Island of Riau Islands Province.
The declaration allows the government to invoke powers to ease of entry of international aid, as well as to generate or allocate funds to respond to the pandemic. The president also formed the COVID-19 acceleration Task Force, with the Head of BNPB (National Agency of Disaster Management) as leading the task force. BNBP stated a 91-day emergency status on the pandemic starting from 29 February until 29 May 2020. Task forces have also been established for 25 provinces, of which 11 provinces have declared an emergency status. The task force is assigned to lead the prevention, response and recovery activities, as well as to employ experts to support the responses. The task force is also required to consult the policy plan with the head of the national task force.
On 16 March 2020, the Ministry of Internal Affairs issued a temporary restriction to export antiseptics, materials for masks manufacturing and personal protective equipment (PPE). On 3 April 2020, the Ministry of Health released guidelines to large-scale social restrictions (Pembatasan Sosial Berskala Besar, PSBB). The guidelines restrict public activities in certain provinces that have been hit by COVID-19. The regulation also became the basis for closing of schools and offices; restrictions on religious activities in communal areas, activities in public spaces and facilities, social and cultural activities; limitation of public transport modes and private vehicles and other restrictions concerning defence and security aspects. On 10 April 2020, Jakarta, with the highest number of positive cases in Indonesia, became the first province that implanted PSBB. On 21 April, the government also banned the traditional “Mudik” or mass exodus of people to go to home provinces, starting on 24 April 2020 until 1 June 2020.
All 34 Provinces in Indonesia identified with positive cases: the top five highest numbers being in DKI Jakarta, West Java, Banten, East Java and South Sulawesi provinces.
In Central Sulawesi, the number of positive cases of COVID-19 has steadily increased. Several hospitals have been appointed by the Provincial Health Office as COVID-19 referral hospitals. The testing capacity in the province remains low. The Sulawesi Government maintains information related to COVID-19 through daily release from Central Sulawesi Data and Information Centre and the website of Provincial Health Office of Central Sulawesi
The provincial governor also decreed various regulations on the COVID-19 situation management specifically on population movements in attempt to stem the transmission of the virus.
Roads, airports and seaports have been regulated with crossboundary movements allowed only from 06:00 to 22:00 and submission of valid PCR test. Physical distancing regulations are also in place, particularly in public places and markets. The gatherings should be approved by SATGAS (provincial emergency health body). Wearing facial masks is obligatory at all times in public.
NGOs present in the area, most of which have been responding to the 2018 earthquake and tsunami, are coordinating COVID19 responses to track activities and provide support to the provincial government. Requests to reactivate the health cluster, including for psychosocial support, have been raised by NGOs to provide a formal coordination mechanism for all the actors in the province.