Death toll rises in Indonesian capital’s floods
THE death toll from floods in Indonesia’s capital Jakarta has risen to 43 as rescuers found more bodies amid receding floodwaters.
Monsoon rains and rising rivers submerged at least 182 neighbourhoods in greater Jakarta and caused landslides in the Bogor and Depok districts on the city’s outskirts as well as in Lebak.
National Disaster Mitigation Agency spokesperson Agus Wibowo said the fatalities also included those who had drowned or been electrocuted since rivers broke their banks on Wednesday after extreme torrential rain on New Year’s Eve.
It was the worst flooding since 2013, when Jakarta was inundated by monsoon rains.
Wibowo said about 397,000 people sought refuge in shelters across the greater metropolitan area. Floodwaters started receding in some parts of the city on Thursday evening, enabling residents to return to their homes.
Those returning found streets covered in mud and debris. Cars that had been parked in driveways were swept away, landing upside down in parks or piled up in narrow alleys.
Jakarta’s Halim Perdanakusuma domestic airport reopened on Thursday after its runway was submerged.
Head of the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency Dwikorita Karnawati said more downpours were forecast for the capital in the coming days and the potential for extreme rainfall will continue until next month across Indonesia.
Jakarta is home to 10 million people, or 30m in its greater metropolitan area. It is prone to earthquakes and flooding and is rapidly sinking due to uncontrolled extraction of ground water.