The death toll from the quake and a tsunami in the province jumped to 384 with 540 people sustaining serious injuries, a disaster management agency official said on Saturday. 29 people are listed as missing.
Waves up to 3m (10ft) high swept through Palu on Sulawesi island in tsunami triggered by earthquake to the magnitude 7.5 hit an Indonesian city on Friday.
It is said that the death toll is expected to rise as many earthquake victims, trapped under the rubble of the destroyed buildings, including the city`s biggest shopping mall, have yet to be evacuated. The figures were only accounted in Palu, while the impacts of the natural disasters in Donggala and its coastal areas which was hit by the tsunami has not been included in the data, Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, spokesman of the national disaster management agency, said.
Video on social media shows people screaming and fleeing in panic and a mosque among the buildings damaged. Strong aftershocks continue to rock the city. Thousands of homes have collapsed, along with hospitals, hotels and a shopping centre.
Rescue efforts are under way, though hampered by a major power cut. The main road to Palu has been blocked due to a landslide, and a key bridge is out of action.
"When the threat arose yesterday, people were still doing their activities on the beach and did not immediately run and they became victims," Sutopo Purwo Nugroho told a news briefing. Some survived by climbing six metre (18 ft) trees to escape the huge waves, the spokesman said.(PenNews with input from UNI)