21 dead in In­done­sia flash floods

Gulf Times - - ASIA/AUSTRALASIA -

Flash floods and land­slides trig­gered by tor­ren­tial rains in In­done­sia have killed at least 21 peo­ple, in­clud­ing 11 school­child­ren, left 15 miss­ing, and de­stroyed hun­dreds of homes, au­thor­i­ties said yes­ter­day.

More than 500 homes in the prov­inces of North and West Su­ma­tra have been flooded or dam­aged, with some swept away by the floods, which also de­stroyed three sus­pen­sion bridges, said a disaster relief of­fi­cial.

“Evac­u­a­tion as well as search and res­cue op­er­a­tions are un­der­way,” said Su­topo Purwo Nu­groho, a spokesman for disaster mit­i­ga­tion agency BNPB. “But the af­fected villages are in the moun­tains and ac­cess is dif­fi­cult, due to dam­aged roads.”

In North Su­ma­tra, 11 chil­dren study­ing at an Is­lamic vil­lage school died af­ter their class­room wall col­lapsed when a nearby river over­flowed on Fri­day.

“The vic­tims were buried in a tor­rent of mud and wall de­bris,” Su­topo added.

Res­cuers are hunt­ing for one stu­dent still miss­ing from the 29 in the class at the time, but have ac­counted for all the rest, re­gional po­lice chief Ir­san Sin­uhaji said, adding that au­thor­i­ties were check­ing for other peo­ple who may have gone miss­ing.

Two peo­ple were found dead yes­ter­day af­ter their ve­hi­cles were swept away by the river.

Four peo­ple died in land­slides in the city of Si­bolga in North Su­ma­tra, while flash floods in West Su­ma­tra killed four more, in­clud­ing two chil­dren.

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