At least 43 people were killed due to heavy floods and landslides in the Jakarta metropolitan area, according to Indonesian authorities on Friday.
The Indonesian National Board for Disaster Management (BNBP) reported 17 deaths in Bogor, a satellite city of Jakarta, Efe news reported.
According to the BNPB, the rest of the fatalities were registered in Lebak, Bekasi and Tangerang, all satellite cities of the Jakarta metropolitan area, where about 30 million people reside.
Most of the victims died as they were swept away by floodwaters or buried in landslides while others died from electrocution and hypothermia, the government agency added.
Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan has prioritized several areas in East Jakarta for evacuation, including Cawang, Kayu Putih and Cakung.
Earlier on Thursday, President Joko Widodo said that priority had to be given to those trapped by the floodwaters.
“The most important thing is to evacuate the victims,” Widodo said. “The safety and security of the people must be prioritized. We will work on matters (related to) flood management infrastructure later after the evacuation is finished.”
Some 31,000 people had to evacuate to temporary refuge centres due to flooding caused by heavy rainfall in recent days, which led to several rivers overflowing across the capital.
On Wednesday, the Governor said more than 19,000 people had fled their homes.
Anies said there were 3,535 people at temporary shelters in West Jakarta, 888 in North Jakarta and 310 in Central Jakarta.
In 2019, Indonesia’s flash flood and landslides claimed 26 lives.
More than 3,000 people have been evacuated and at least 46 are being treated at local hospitals and health clinics. The floods also damaged houses, government buildings, schools and bridges.
Landslides and flooding are common in Indonesia, especially during the monsoon season between October and April when rain lashes the vast tropical archipelago.
Earlier, flash floods and landslides killed at least 22 people in several districts across Sumatra island.