JAKARTA, Indonesia — Two landslides set off by heavy rainfall and unstable soil killed a minimum of 11 individuals on Java, Indonesia’s most populous island, and left rescue employees trying to find survivors, catastrophe officers mentioned Sunday.
Amongst these killed within the landslides in West Java Province had been the pinnacle of a neighborhood catastrophe reduction company and an Indonesian Military captain who had gone to assist rescue survivors from the primary landslide on Saturday afternoon. They had been caught in a second landslide that night.
The landslides additionally destroyed a bridge and lower off a number of roads within the West Java village of Cihanjuang. Rescuers labored into the night time however confronted an pressing want for heavy equipment to assist transfer earth and attain any potential survivors.
“The primary landslide was triggered by excessive rainfall and unstable soil circumstances,” mentioned Raditya Jati, spokesman for the Nationwide Catastrophe Mitigation Company. “Subsequent landslides occurred whereas officers had been nonetheless evacuating victims on the first landslide space.”
Indonesia’s president, Joko Widodo, had warned in October that the nation might expertise extra flooding and landslides than typical due to the periodic climate sample referred to as La Niña. The wet season is predicted to final till March.
“I need all of us to arrange in anticipation of potential hydrometeorological disasters,” the president said at the time.
An area catastrophe official mentioned that by noon Sunday, rescuers had been nonetheless trying to find out how many individuals had been lacking. Eighteen individuals had been reported injured.
A video of the scene confirmed a river of mud that had plowed by a densely packed neighborhood, apparently crushing and protecting quite a lot of buildings.
The primary landslide struck the village hours after a Sriwijaya Air passenger jet crashed into the Java Sea upon takeoff from Jakarta, the Indonesian capital, in heavy rains, killing all 62 aboard.
Indonesia, an archipelago of 17,500 islands that straddles the Equator, was as soon as lined by huge rain forests. However over the past half-century, most of the forests have been burned and logged to clear the best way for palm plantations and different farmland.
With 270 million individuals, Indonesia is the world’s fourth largest nation and Java, its most populous island, is house to greater than 140 million.