Four days after a magnitude 7.7 earthquake hit off the coast of Indonesia and spawned a tsunami, the death toll has climbed to 413 while the number of missing is now 298.
The National Disaster Coordinating Agency said that along with those numbers there have been 270 people seriously injured, 142 with minor injuries and 22,000 displaced by the tsunami.
Many people in the villages and homes were swept up and carried off without any warning. The hardest hit Mentawai Islands saw at least 6 of 27 villages completely flattened by the disaster. 517 homes total were destroyed by the storm.
The government is considering a plan to relocate those residents who live in the earthquake prone islands near Sumatra.
Sutopo Purwo Nugroho of the Indonesian National Board for Disaster said that protecting those small islands with a warning system during tsunamis is difficult. There are plans for most of the areas to be covered by February 2011. However how effective the system is would rely on other factors such as the size of the tsunami and how close the residents were to it.
The remote location of the islands left those residents with no warning that the tsunami was coming and later caused problems with communication and rescue efforts.
As rescue workers strive to treat the injured, state-run Antara news is reporting that medical supplies are being depleted quickly. Four warships carrying supplies and personnel were set to arrive on Friday to aid the victims.
The United States has pledged to give $2 million in humanitarian assistance to the country for relief from the tsunami and the eruption of Mount Merapi volcano which killed dozens and left thousands displaced.
The European Commission is offering 1.5 million Euros ($2.1 million) to the country as well.