Thu, Mar 21, 2019 - Page 6 News List

Indonesia flood casualties top 100, dozens still missing

AFP, SENTANI, Indonesia

The death toll from flash floods and landslides that tore through Indonesia’s Papua region has topped 100 with dozens more still missing, the Indonesian National Disaster Management Authority said yesterday.

Nearly 10,000 people have moved to shelters, while at least 104 people are confirmed to have died and 79 are unaccounted for in the aftermath of the disaster, triggered by heavy rain on Saturday last week.

Scores have sustained injuries, including cuts and broken bones, while about 40 unidentified bodies would be buried in a mass grave today, officials said.

Many survivors fear more floods are to rip through hard-hit Papua, which shares a border with Papua New Guinea.

“The increasing number of evacuees has made the shelters very crowded and uncomfortable,” agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said.

As teams loaded mud-caked corpses into body bags, the search for survivors was hampered by mountains of debris, including rocks and fallen trees.

Hundreds of homes, bridges, schools and other public facilities were destroyed.

More than 2,300 personnel have been deployed to search for missing people and clear debris.

Flooding is common in Indonesia, especially during the rainy season from October to April.

In January, floods and landslides killed at least 70 people on Sulawesi Island, while earlier this month hundreds in West Java Province were forced to evacuate when torrential rains triggered severe flooding.

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