Bukittinggi, West Sumatra (ANTARA) - The National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) recorded that the total death toll of the cold lava flood of Mount Marapi in West Sumatra reached 67 on Thursday morning.

Head of the BNPB Disaster Data, Information, and Communication Center, Abdul Muhari, noted in a statement from his office that the figure increased after the joint SAR team succeeded in finding several people who were earlier reported missing.

Based on a report received by his side, currently, 20 victims are missing, as compared to 35 people earlier.

One of the victims found dead was Halimatu Sa'diyah, a resident of Bukik Batabuah, Canduang Sub-district, Agam District, whose body was found about five kilometers from the place where she was reported missing, on Wednesday (May 15), Muhari noted.

Moreover, the disaster also affected 989 families, a decrease from the previously recorded 1,543 families, while the number of injured victims increased by 44 people as compared to 33 people earlier, he pointed out.

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According to Muhari, the victims were confirmed to come from five districts and cities -- Agam District, Tanah Datar, Padang Pariaman, Padang City, and Padang Panjang -- affected by the Mount Marapi cold lava flood disaster.

"We are still in the search and identification process. The total fatalities can change," he remarked.

However, he ensured that the needs of all victims and residents would be met during the emergency response period for the next 14 days starting on Monday (May 13).

Muhari stated that BNPB Head Suharyanto continues to report the condition of handling the impact of the hydro-meteorological disaster to President Joko Widodo, who pressed for prompt fulfillment of all priority needs, including ensuring that efforts to prevent potential subsequent disasters can be carried out well. Flash floods and lava floods hit several sub-districts in Agam District, Tanah Datar, Padang Panjang, Padang Pariaman, and Padang on May 11.

The disaster caused serious damage and cut off the Padang-Agam-Tanah Datar-Bukittinggi-Solok transportation route.

Translator: M. Riezko Bima, Resinta Sulistiyandari
Editor: Yuni Arisandy Sinaga
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