9 dead as Jakarta hit by worst flooding since 2013

9 dead as Jakarta hit by worst flooding since 2013

Flooding is seen in Jakarta in this screen capture from video posted on Dec 31, 2019. (YouTube/Jaka Parker)
Flooding is seen in Jakarta in this screen capture from video posted on Dec 31, 2019. (YouTube/Jaka Parker)

JAKARTA: Heavy monsoon rain in the Indonesian capital and nearby cities since New Year’s eve triggered likely the worst flooding in almost seven years, submerging homes and cars, shutting one of Jakarta’s airports and leaving at least nine people dead.

A 16-year-old was electrocuted by a power line, while three more people died of hypothermia said Jakarta disaster management agency head Subejo.

"We're hoping that the floodwaters will recede, but if the rain keeps up it'll continue," said the official, who like many Indonesians goes by one name.

Among the victims was an elderly couple trapped inside their home in a district where floodwaters reached as high as four metres after a river burst its banks.

Another victim drowned while four people were killed after the Tuesday evening downpour triggered landslides in the city's outskirts.

More than 700 areas in the greater Jakarta region suffered from power outages, according to state-run electricity company PT Perusahaan Listrik Negara. Commuter trains suspended some operations, said PT Kereta Commuter Indonesia.

The Jakarta provincial government said it is prioritising the safety of residents and instructed schools and some offices to be prepared in providing shelter as the country’s weather agency expects rainfall to continue in the next three days.

The Halim Perdanakusuma airport was closed as the runway was flooded and authorities diverted several flights to Soekarno-Hatta. Many roads in Jakarta were also not passable.

In January 2013, more than 30 million residents of Jakarta were affected by flooding that killed dozens of people and inundated areas including the central business district.

Indonesia’s weather agency, known as BMKG, urged people to store important documents in a safe place and to prepare for power supply backup.


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