Sukabumi declares emergency status following flash floods

Sukabumi declares emergency status following flash floods

A car trapped in the muddy backyard of a building in Pasawahan village, Cicurug subdistrict, Sukabumi district, West Java, after the flash floods on September 21, 2020. (Antara/Aditya Rohman)

Sukabumi, W Java (ANTARA) - The Sukabumi district government has declared a disaster emergency response status until September 27, 2020 in Cicurug, Parungkuda, and Cibadak subdistricts, which were severely affected by flash floods on Monday.

“The emergency response status is aimed at accelerating mitigation efforts in the disaster zones to assist the affected residents,” Sukabumi district head Marwan Hamami told local journalists here on Wednesday.

Under the disaster emergency response status, a joint team of humanitarian workers drawn from the district's disaster mitigation agency, military, police, search and rescue agency, Indonesian Red Cross (PMI), and local communities are working to restore order, he said.

Public kitchens have been set up in affected areas to provide meals to those affected by the floods. In the aftermath of the flooding, local residents and volunteers are also working together to clean debris manually or with backhoes.

As of Wednesday, search and rescue workers have found two of the three residents who had gone missing after being carried away by floodwaters. Search efforts are on to locate the remaining missing resident, Hamami said.

Twelve teams of SAR workers have been deployed for the search operation, he said, adding that 10 wounded residents have been hospitalized, while residents who have been displaced have gradually been provided aid in the form of meals, mattress, toiletries, and tents.

The Sukabumi district administration is coordinating with government agencies to accelerate mitigation efforts in the disaster zones to prevent those displaced by the floods from falling sick amid the ongoing rainy season, he said.

Access roads and damaged bridges need to be fixed without delay to enable locals to return to their normal lives, he added.

The National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) has reported that the flash floods that struck some parts of Sukabumi district, West Java, on Monday were triggered by the overflowing of Citarik-Cipeucit and Cibojong rivers.

The catastrophe has claimed at least two lives, left 10 people injured, and affected 176 households, or 525 people. Seventy eight of the affected people have been displaced from their homes. The flooding has also damaged 127 houses in 11 villages.

Sukabumi is one of the areas in West Java which is prone to flooding and landslides.

According to the West Java Disaster Mitigation Agency, at least 1,039 natural disasters have been reported in various parts of the province and affected 768,319 residents between January and August this year.

The majority of the catastrophes were hydrological disasters, such as flooding and landslides, the agency's head, Dani Ramdan, said. (INE)

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