15 dead in Indonesia landslides, floods: disaster agency

By AFP   May 3, 2024 | 10:38 pm PT
15 dead in Indonesia landslides, floods: disaster agency
The wreckage of a car swept away by flash flooding is seen by a river bank in Pesisir Selatan Regency, West Sumatra on March 9, 2024, after days of heavy rain across the province. Photo by AFP
At least 15 people have died after landslides and flooding in central Indonesia swept away dozens of houses and damaged roads, the country's disaster agency said Saturday.

Indonesia is prone to landslides during the rainy season, with the problem aggravated in some places by deforestation, with prolonged torrential rain causing flooding in some areas of the archipelago nation.

The landslides struck Luwu regency in South Sulawesi on Friday just after 1:00 am local time, said Abdul Muhari, spokesperson of Indonesia's disaster mitigation agency (BNPB), in a statement.

"A total of 14 residents died due to floods and landslides in Luwu regency, South Sulawesi province," he said.

The agency said more than 100 houses were seriously damaged and 42 were swept away, while four roads and one bridge were damaged.

More than 100 people were evacuated to mosques or relatives' homes and more than 1,300 families were affected with authorities trying to evacuate them.

In another area of South Sulawesi province, at least one person died and two others were injured in floods on Friday, Abdul said in another statement

In March flash floods and landslides on Sumatra island killed at least 30 people with scores still missing.

A landslide and flooding swept away dozens of houses and destroyed a hotel near Lake Toba on Sumatra in December, killing at least two people.

Indonesia has suffered a string of recent extreme weather events in its rainy season, which experts say are made more likely by climate change.

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