U.S. tourism industry in shock after tsunami hits Indonesia

By KAY HABIER-JOHANESEN, Associated Press ISTANBUL — U.S.-Indonesia trade and tourism officials have issued a global alert for the aftermath of the deadly tsunami in Indonesia.

The United States Geological Survey said the tsunami triggered a powerful wave that traveled 4.3 miles (7 kilometers) and caused widespread damage and deaths in the central island of Java, killing more than 300 people.

The U.N. World Meteorological Organization said the wave was the strongest to hit Indonesia in more than two decades and caused some of the worst damage to coastal cities.

Indonesian officials said at least 649 people have died from the tsunami, with more than 2,000 missing.

The death toll is expected to rise because of missing and presumed dead relatives.

The tsunami hit at dawn Wednesday, according to the World Meteorology Organization.

It was centered about 2 miles (3 kilometers) south of the capital, Jakarta, and about 3 miles (5 kilometers) northwest of the town of Muda, officials said.

It is the worst tropical cyclone to hit Java in more.

Two months ago, a tropical storm named Mersie struck the same area, causing massive damage.

The surge of water from the wave, which was initially measured at 12 feet (3.8 meters), caused extensive damage, including damage to a major road, the Jakarta Post reported.

The country is one of the world’s top tourist destinations and home to many millions of tourists each year.

The quake hit at 8:30 a.m. local time and was felt across the Indonesian archipelago, where the epicenter was about 4 miles (6 kilometers) north of the coast city of Surabaya.

IndONESIA ISSUES INSTRUCTIONS FOR NEW THERAPY FOR THOSE WHO HAVE FELT A THUNDERSTORMThe Indonesian tsunami warning is in effect until 6 p.m., according to Indonesia’s Ministry of Disaster Risk Reduction and Management.

About the author