Simeulue island is an island of Indonesia, 150 kilometres (93 mi) off the west coast of Sumatra. Simeulue was once a part of West Aceh Regency but was split off in 1999 and became an independent Simeulue Regency. Simeulue was close to the epicenter of the 9.3 magnitude 26 December 2004 earthquake. On 28 March 2005, an 8.7 magnitude earthquake struck with its epicenter just off the south end of the island. During the earthquake, Simeulue rose at least six feet on the western coast; this left the flat top of its coral reefs above high tide. On the east coast, the land was submerged, with seawater flooding fields and settlements.
Although Simeulue Island was only 60 kilometers from the epicenter, while Banda Aceh was about 250 kilometers, 6 residents died while the remaining 70,000 persons were safe because of local wisdom called 'smong', which after an earthquake, when the tide suddenly recedes, they should evacuate to highland as soon as possible.