No Warning

PUBLISHED: 1:00 PM 23 Dec 2018
UPDATED: 6:36 PM 23 Dec 2018

Tsunami Strikes Without Warning: Hundreds Dead As Social Media Captures Disaster

There was no warning of the deadly tidal wave that struck Indonesia’s Sunda Strait on Saturday night, and one video has captured the moment it hit.

The band Seventeen was playing on the beach when the wave struck.

At least 222 people have been killed after a deadly tsunami struck the country of Indonesia last night. Along the Sunda Strait, the wave smashed homes, hotels, and beachside buildings.

One social media post showed the moment the wave struck an Indonesian pop band. The group has reported the death of their bass player and road manager, and other members of the group are still missing.

In a news release, the band named Seventeen confirmed the deaths of bassist  M. Awal Purbani, also known as Bani, and road manager Oki Wijaya, the Jakarta Post reported.

Four others, guitarist Herman Sikumbang, drummer Andi Windu Darmawan, crew member Ujang, and Dylan Sahara, wife of vocalist Riefian Fajarsyah, haven’t been found yet.

Seventeen was performing at an event held by state electric company PLN near the shore of Tanjung Lesung beach when the tidal wave hit their stage around 9:30 p.m.”

Social media footage of the disaster shows the stage lurching forward into the audience along with the band and its equipment.

More than 800 other people were injured, and the death toll continues to rise.

The Associated Press reported, “It was the second deadly tsunami to hit Indonesia this year, but the one that killed more than 2,500 people on the island of Sulawesi on Sept. 28 was accompanied by a powerful earthquake that gave residents a brief warning before the waves struck.”

Oddly, there was absolutely no warning.

The ground didn’t shake beforehand to alert people to the oncoming wave.

“Azki Kurniawan, 16, said his first warning about the tsunami was when people burst into the lobby of the Patra Comfort Hotel shouting, ‘Sea water rising!’”

“Suddenly, a 1-meter (3.3-foot) wave hit me,” he said, his eyes red and swollen from crying. “I was thrown into the fence of a building about 30 meters (100 feet) from the beach and held onto the fence as strong as I could, trying to resist the water, which felt like it would drag me back into the sea. I cried in fear … ‘This is a tsunami?’ I was afraid I would die.”

“Gegar Prasetya, co-founder of the Tsunami Research Center Indonesia, said Saturday’s tsunami was likely caused by a flank collapse — when a big section of a volcano’s slope gives way. It’s possible for an eruption to trigger a landslide above ground or beneath the ocean, both capable of producing waves.”

“Actually, the tsunami was not really big, only 1 meter (3.3 feet),” said Prasetya, who has studied Krakatoa. “The problem is people always tend to build everything close to the shoreline.”