Flash floods kill many in Indonesia and Timor Leste

Flash floods kill many in Indonesia and Timor Leste

Kanako Mita and Sawako Utsumi

Modern Tokyo Times

Flash flooding is known to have killed at least 50 people in Indonesia and Timor Leste (East Timor). The severity of the situation and threat to livestock means the final death toll is likely to be higher.

Landslides, generated by torrential rain, hit a vast area from Flores Island (eastern Indonesia) to the country of Timor Leste. Images show people, houses, and livestock being swept away. Hence, the full extent of the crisis isn’t fully known because of the remoteness of many areas that have been hit.

Voice of America reports, “In the city of Bima in the province of West Nusa Tenggara, the rising waters after nine hours of downpour overflowed the dams in four subdistricts, submerging almost 10,000 houses and killing at least two people…”

Similarly, in Timor Leste, a landslide in the environs of Dili is known to have killed eight people. Thus the latest flash flooding will cause economic havoc to parts of eastern Indonesia and Timor Leste.

The BBC reports, “Torrential rain sparked widespread destruction, with floodwater from overflowing dams submerging thousands of homes on the islands.”

The Deputy Regent in East Flores, Agustinus Payong Boli, believes that approximately 60 people have died. Thus, with at least eight known deaths in Timor Leste, the death toll looks set to rise from the reported 50 known deaths.

Indonesia is also facing a long-lasting coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis with over 41,000 deaths. Indeed, the real death toll from coronavirus is higher. Hence, the latest flash floods – just like 40 people dying earlier this year in West Java from landslides – highlight the multiple problems facing Indonesia.




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