Floods kill dozens and landslides hit Indonesia and East Timor
The developing tropical system caused torrential rains on the islands of eastern Indonesia and East Timor throughout the weekend, causing widespread floods and deadly landslides. AccuWeather forecasters warn that it is expected to rain more in the next few days. At least nine people were killed in the floods in Dili, the capital of East Timor, as of Sunday night local time, Civil Protection officials told local media. Authorities called the city a “disaster zone” because heavy tropical rainy days filled Dili with floods, especially at high tide. This satellite image from Sunday night local time shows the intensification of tropical cyclones causing severe floods and landslides in parts of Indonesia and East Timor. (CIRA / RAMMB) Extensive damage to homes and businesses has been reported, including the infrastructure needed to combat the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The staff at the warehouse where East Timor’s medicines are stored are working to save as much as possible after the building is flooded on the weekends. This is the same building that was supposed to store the COVID-19 vaccine that was due to arrive on Monday. According to local media, residents and officials report water levels as high as 6.5 feet (2 m) in some areas along the Comoros River where houses are washed away. Click here for the free Accuweather app The state of East Nusa Tengala in eastern Indonesia was also hit by torrential rains on the weekends. Flash floods and landslides have killed at least 41 people and evacuated thousands, according to the Associated Press. Raditia Jati, a spokesman for the National Disaster Mitigation Agency, said hundreds of people across the state were involved in search and rescue operations. Jati added that six villages were affected by floods and landslides, and power outages, debris, thick mud covering roads and rough seas hindered restoration work. In a flash flood village in East Flores, Indonesia, people will inspect a damaged building on Sunday, April 4, 2021. Landslides and flash floods from heavy rains in eastern Indonesia have killed many and evacuated thousands, the Disaster Agency said on Sunday. (AP photo / Ora Adonara) Early Sunday morning, a mud rushed down a hill into the village of Ramenere, Lenny Ola, who heads a local disaster agency, told the AP that rescue teams killed 35 bodies and at least five injured. He added that he had recovered. Floods in the village of Oyanbayan have left hundreds of people fleeing their homes. According to Ora, 40 homes were destroyed, including those that were flooded. Floods in the town of Bima in West Nusa Tengala have forced nearly 10,000 people to evacuate, AP reports. Flood and landslide deaths are expected to increase in the coming days as search and rescue missions continue in some areas and tropical rainfall continues in others. The torrential rains that caused damage to eastern Indonesia and Timor-Leste as a whole are due to tropical cyclones that are spinning and intensifying near the island. This tropical cyclone intensifies at the beginning of the week due to the abundance of warm water over the Timor Sea and mild to moderate wind shear. Heavy rains and increasingly gusts can remain in the already-hit areas of East Nusa Tengala until Monday night as tropical cyclones begin to drift southwest, almost stationary on weekends. “A cyclone is likely to intensify into a tropical cyclone Odette on Monday local time and is expected to intensify further on Tuesday and Wednesday,” said Jason Nichols, lead international meteorologist at AccuWeather. The direction in which this potential tropical cyclone advances later in the week depends on another tropical cyclone developing near Christmas Island. The storm is projected to move eastward as it grows stronger this week. “If this cyclone can become a cyclone, it’s called a paddy field and can eventually interact with the brewing of a tropical cyclone Odette later in the week,” Nicoles added. Depending on the exact course and strength of these two storms as they approach each other in the middle of the week, they will help determine the future course. Due to the uncertainties surrounding these two features, interest along the Pilbara and Gascoin coasts of Western Australia needs to monitor these storms throughout the week. Keep checking AccuWeather.com and keep an eye out for DirecTV, Frontier, Spectrum, FuboTV, Philo, and Verizon Fios’ AccuWeather networks.