Palu, C Sulawesi (ANTARA) - Access to the Trans Sulawesi line on the Toboli-Taweli National Road shaft, or the "Coffee Plantation" line, was totally cut off after landslide triggered by incessant rain lashing Monday (June 3) buried the road body.

Junaedi, a Palu resident looking to cross the lane, confirmed the landslide that had occurred since dawn had hindered the smooth flow of traffic from Palu City to various cities within and outside the Central Sulawesi region, resulting in a spiraling line-up of vehicles along the road.

Motorcycles, cars, as well as buses carrying homebound travelers are yet stranded at the axis of the road.

Other vehicles not stuck in the congestion from Toboli to Palu, the Central Sulawesi provincial capital, were left with no choice but to turn around and continue their journey through another alternative route, Kasimbar-Tambu.

Undoubtedly, the Kasimbar-Tambu alternative route is located further, so vehicles opt to go through the Taweli-Toboli road axis, which is some kilometers, as it is only takes within two hours.

"If one goes through the Kasimbar-Tambu axis, it could take up to three hours," he pointed out.

Taweli-Toboli Road Improvement Commitment Making Officer Jullian Situmorang, when contacted by Antara, confirmed that access to the road was cut off following a landslide.

The landslide hit some two kilometers from Toboli, Parigi Moutong Regency.

He stated that the contractor engaged in road repair and widening in the "Coffee Plantation" area was currently clearing out the rubble from the landslide to reopen access to the road.

"Several of the company's heavy equipment can be deployed at any time in the event of a landslide," he affirmed.

He confirmed that the road was buried following the landslide at around 3:00 WITA, Tuesday morning, but since 1:00 WITA, the police had banned the entry of vehicles owing to material from the top of the mountain collapsing.

"Later, at 3 a.m. local time, the rubble from the landslide completely covered the new road body," he revealed.

However, Situmorang has made assurance that in the next hour or two, the contractor will be able to clear the landslide material from the road to ensure that vehicular flow from and to Palu City is restored.

The Taweli-Toboli section of the road has been a route for connecting Trans Sulawesi with Palu, the capital city of Central Sulawesi Province, which gets crowded on a daily basis.

Translator: Anas Masa/Eliswan Azly
Editor: Sri Haryati
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