At least 304 people were killed after a tsunami smashed into fishing villages and resorts on
|Children stand amid the wreckage of a house in Pangandaran, Indonesia July 18, 2006|
No warnings were reported despite efforts around the region to establish early warning systems after the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami that killed 230,000 people, including 170,000 in
But many residents and tourists recognized the signs and fled to higher ground as the sea receded before huge waves came crashing ashore.
Officials said 304 people were confirmed dead and nearly 150 people were missing after Monday's huge waves crashed into Java's southern coast, washing away buildings, wooden cottages and kiosks lining the shoreline facing the
Vice President Jusuf Kalla said the death toll was expected to climb.
"In a tsunami, it is possible that the number (of dead) will increase, especially those who are missing or who have been washed away to sea," he told Elshinta radio.
Kalla said the government's priority was to provide healthcare, food and shelter and then move to evaluating the damage and reconstruction of houses.
Soldiers were trying to retrieve bodies trapped under a collapsed concrete wall
Metro TV reported several bodies were found in trees along Pangandaran beach near the town of
A regional government official in the most hard-hit area said that deaths there totaled 171, while the Indonesian Red Cross said the dead in other areas totaled 60.
There were no reports of casualties or damage in any other country from Monday's tsunami.
Earthquakes are frequent in