Rescuers search for survivors in deadly Indonesian landslide

Agence France-Presse
Rescuers search for survivors in deadly Indonesian landslide

AFP

5 people are reported dead, while at least 38 are missing after the landslide

JAKARTA, Indonesia – Rescuers are searching for survivors after a landslide triggered by heavy rain left at least 5 people dead and dozens missing in western Indonesia, an official said Tuesday, January 1.

The landslide occurred shortly before sunset on December 31, in West Java province. Search and rescue teams have found 5 people dead and are scouring the area for at least 38 missing people according to the national disaster agency.

Pouring rain, electricity cuts and rough roads are preventing heavy machinery from accessing the area in Sukabumi regency, disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said.

“Relief efforts have also been hampered by a lot of people who want to get to the disaster,” he said.

“The roads are narrow which has caused rescue teams, logistics and ambulances to be stuck in traffic jams.”

The search operation was halted overnight but continued Tuesday morning.

3 people have been injured in the disaster and 61 others evacuated from the area, Nugroho said.

Landslides are common in Indonesia, a vast tropical archipelago prone to natural disasters and torrential downpours.

More than 20 people died in October when flash floods and landslides hit several provinces on Sumatra island, western Indonesia.

In June 2016, nearly 50 people died when floods and landslides struck Banjarnegara regency, Central Java province.– Rappler.com

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