Home World Two months on, survivors in Palu search for signs of new life

Two months on, survivors in Palu search for signs of new life

PHOTO ESSAY | The twin disasters of a 7.4-magnitude earthquake and a tsunami that hit the coastal city of Palu on Sept 28 left about 2,200 dead and hundreds of thousands displaced.


Nearly two months into the arduous process of rebuilding, survivors are still coping with the loss of their livelihoods, homes and loved ones.

The dome of a mosque destroyed by liquefaction in Balaroa.

A house in Petobo laid to waste by liquefaction.

A boy sits among the ruins of his destroyed home.

An aerial view of the destruction wrought by the twin disasters.

Safe play spaces in temporary schools and shelters are providing the children in Palu – including those orphaned or separated from their families by the disasters – some measure of solace.

Children play in a temporary shelter.

A #PrayforPalu hashtag seen on a wall.

Volunteer rescuers from Indonesia and other parts of the world, drawn to the plight of the islanders, have stepped in to lend a helping hand. Billions in aid have also poured in from neighbouring countries.

Survivors inspecting what remains of their village.

But because the devastation wrought by the earthquake, tsunami, and the liquefaction that followed was so absolute, Indonesian authorities estimate that the process of rebuilding and rehabilitation will take no less than two years.

A boy sits on a road upended by the earthquake and liquefaction.

Two cars crunched together stand as a monument to the disaster.

With no hope of regaining what was lost, survivors in Palu are persisting against the odds in an impossible test of human resilience.

For now, they can only dream of the trickles of a new life emerging from the aftermath of the disaster.

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