Frantic rescue attempts to free 50 trapped in collapsed Indonesia hotel

Hotel Roa Roa collapse
Hotel Roa Roa prior to collapse. Rescuers extricate bodies from rubble of hotel in wake of 7.4 quake and tsunami.

Palu, Indonesia – At least 50 people are still believed trapped in the collapsed rubble of the 8 storey Hotel Roa Roa after the 7.4 quake and tsunami.

Search and Rescue personnel were extricating bodies from the rubble of the three- star hotel as Indonesian authorities said more than 832 people are dead in this central Sulawesi city.

A spokesman for the national disaster agency said in a statement that heavy equipment will be needed to extricate the trapped, wounded or dead from the hotel’s ruins.

Rubble of Hotel Roa Roa
Search and Rescue personnel remove a body from 8 storey Hotel Roa Roa that collapsed during the earthquake.

Access to other areas nearby remains difficult. President Joko Widodo inspected several devastated areas surrounding Palu and Donggala.

Widodo also visited Talise Beach where a large Tsunami came ashore killing dozens, perhaps hundreds of people.

“This beach is the main tourist spot in Palu and the most affected by the tsunami,” said a spokesman commenting on the president’s visit. However, most tourists were accounted for, according to rescue agencies.

Hotel Roa Roa prior yo collapsing during earthquake.
Hotel Roa Roa collapsed trapping at least 50 people.

On social media accounts, government agencies are asking for help for people left without food or shelter as communication and transportation remain patchy.

Among items being sought is fuel, power generators, blankets, tents, food and even body bags.

The death toll is expected to rise significantly as more areas are accessed by rescuers.

President Joko Widodo
President Joko Widodo (camouflage jacket) examined widespread devastation in central Sulawesi on Sunday.