Tradegy: Deadly flood hits Jakarta, kills 21 people


At least 21 people have died in flooding in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta after the city had its most intense rainfall for at least 24 years.

The Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) measured 377mm (14.8 inches) of rainfall in a day at an airport in East Jakarta.

That’s the most rain in a single day since at least 1996 when records supplied by the agency began.

“The rain falling on New Year’s Eve… is not ordinary rain,”

The agency said the intensity of the rain was due to several factors, including the monsoon season, as well as a high amount of water vapor in the air.
At least 62,000 people have been evacuated out of the city.
Some people spent the night on the roofs of their buildings while awaiting to evacuated by a rescue team in Tangerang, near Jakarta, on 1 January

The heavy rainfall is expected to continue until the weekend.

Elsewhere in East Jakarta, 335mm was recorded, while in Bekasi, further east, 259mm fell.

Rainfall above 150mm per day is considered extreme by the agency.

Maximum rainfall intensity during major Jakarta floods

Source: Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG)

The intense rain began on New Year’s Eve and continued through the night, leading to parts of the city being submerged and landslides on the outskirts.

The victims ranged in age from eight to 82. Some died of hypothermia, while others drowned or were killed by landslides.

One 16-year-old boy was electrocuted by a power line.

The electricity has been switched off in many districts of Jakarta as a precaution, and some railway lines are also shut.

On Twitter, President Joko Widodo blamed delays in flood control infrastructure projects for the severity of the damage.

I have lived in West Jakarta for seven years. The capital is always prone to floods and no one thought this monsoon season was going to be a big deal.

I worked on New Year’s Day and commuting was a nightmare. All main roads were closed, there was no public transportation – and authorities made no public announcement about it.

I walked for two hours through water up to my thighs. Finally, I hitched a lift with a truck to take me to the office.

Usually, it takes me 45 minutes to go to the office. This time, it took four hours in total.

I have lost electricity in my apartment, but I am far luckier than others. I met Azizah, who lives 3km from my home.

The 52-year-old told me she could not work, or cook because the water had already reached her roof.

She had not experienced worse floods in her 22 years living in Jakarta. She is now in a shelter.

Jakarta is one of the fastest-sinking cities in the world and experts say it could be entirely submerged by 2050.


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