Indonesian landslide deaths increased to 140, dozens missing

Lembata, Indonesia — A landslide in eastern Indonesia has killed 140 people and left dozens missing, officials said Wednesday.

To date, 67 bodies have been recovered and 6 have gone missing in the East Flores area of ​​Adonara Island, suffering the most losses. Early on Sunday, mud fell from the surrounding hills and caught sleeping people. Some were flushed by flash floods after an overnight rain burst the banks of the river.

According to the National Disaster Management Agency, on nearby Lembata Island, heavy rains caused by a tropical cyclone Seroha caused lava to solidify from a volcanic eruption in November, destroying more than 12 villages, killing at least 32 people and killing 35 people. The cause became unknown.

Hundreds of police, soldiers and residents dug up rubble with bare hands, shovels and hoes looking for burials. Relatives cried on Wednesday when they saw the rescuer pull out his mud-solidified body and bury it on a bamboo stretcher.

“Find your father and mother still buried … in any condition.” Susanna Tasoin is a rescue team struggling to dig up large amounts of volcanic material and rocks with farm tools in the village of Waimatan on Lembata Island. Shouted to. Respect for them. “

Damage in the village
Residents will investigate the damage to a flash flood village in East Flores, Indonesia on April 4, 2021. (Ora Adnara / AP photo)

Overall, landslides and floods have killed at least 140 people on several islands in Indonesia and 27 people in neighboring East Timor. Thousands of homes were damaged and thousands of people were evacuated by the weather. The storm is moving south towards Australia and is expected to continue at least until Friday.

Rescue operations were hampered by rain and remote areas in areas where roads and bridges were damaged in many places.

Rescue workers with excavators and large amounts of food and medicine were deployed from the city of Makassar on Sulawesi, but were hampered by bad weather and very high waves.

Five helicopters were helping reach the isolated areas of the island, Chief Donimonald of the National Disaster Management Agency told reporters late Wednesday.

He said evacuees are in desperate need of basic necessities such as blankets, mats, tents, baby food and medical services.

The government has provided tens of thousands of anti-coronavirus masks, and Monald said authorities will set up health centers in refugee camps to test people for viruses.

He said six naval vessels, including a hospital ship, are expected to arrive on Friday to rescue the overwhelming hospitals and clinics in East Nusa Tengala, one of Indonesia’s poorest states. ..

By Ricko Wawo and Niniek Karmini

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