Friday, October 02, 2009

Indoneisa: A call for help via text messaging

Trapped Indonesian quake victim sends text message
PADANG, Indonesia — An earthquake survivor trapped in a collapsed hotel in western Indonesia sent a text message saying he and some others were alive, triggering a frantic rescue operation Saturday.

Padang's police chief said voices and claps were heard from survivors buried in the Ambacang Hotel since Wednesday's 7.6-magnitude earthquake, which killed at least 715 people.

"We estimate there are still eight people trapped alive under Ambacang Hotel," Col. Boy Rafli Amar told reporters. "We are still trying hard to evacuate them."

He said one survivor — who had been staying in Room 338 of the hotel — sent a text message to relatives Friday, saying he and some others are still alive. The relatives then informed the authorities, he said.

As he spoke, rescuers used earth-moving equipment, backhoes and drills to try and break a passage through thick slabs of concrete of the six-story hotel. [...]

I hope they get rescued.

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