S Tapanuli, N Sumatra (ANTARA) - The torrent of water from incessant heavy rains, lashing since Tuesday, led to extensive flooding that inundated at least 163 homes in South Tapanuli District, North Sumatra Province.

"The number of houses submerged by the flooding has reached 163," Habibullah Harahap, the chief of Simataniari Village, Angkola Sangkunur Sub-district, stated here on Wednesday.

The floodwaters began entering the residents' homes at around 4 a.m. local time Wednesday morning, as the Sangkunur and Batang Toru rivers overflowed their banks.

"In Pardomuan hamlet, 96 families are affected by flooding, while 67 families in Setia Baru are impacted. A total of 163 houses have been flooded," he stated.

The floodwaters in Pardomuan reached heights of up to two meters, while one-meter-high waters were recorded in Setia Baru.

Some 50 families were forced to flee to higher ground, he stated.

The flooding also led to elementary and junior high schools being temporarily closed, as the buildings were submerged by floodwaters reaching the height of an adult’s knee.

"Agricultural and plantation areas, measuring between 25 to 30 hectares, are also flooded," he pointed out.

Head of the South Tapanuli Disaster Mitigation Office (BPBD) Ilham Suhardi spoke of his plan to immediately send his team to review and evaluate the impact of the flood.

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Translator: Juraidi, Kodir, Fardah
Editor: Sri Haryati
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