Police in central Java said most of the houses in the village of Sijeruk were completely buried, and it is feared the death toll could rise further. Rescuers are also looking for survivors after flash floods and landslips killed 57 people in East Java on Tuesday. A number of people in the area are still reported missing. Environmentalists have warned that increasing deforestation on Java is contributing to the severity of disasters like floods and landslides.
Tons of mud and rubble came down onto the village of Sijeruk just after dawn on Wednesday, sweeping away more than 100 houses. Emergency officials said that so far, only one body had been recovered, but that it is feared that few in the village would have been able to escape. The authorities have sent earth-moving equipment to the area to help the search for survivors.
The incident happened as police, soldiers, villagers and volunteers continued to pull bodies from the sludge and wreckage in Jember, East Java, after flash floods and landslides there the day before.
The deluge hit when a river burst its banks after days of heavy rain. Officials say that more than 2,500 buildings have been destroyed, and they expect to find more bodies as the debris is cleared. Flash flooding and landslides are common in Indonesia, especially during the rainy season between November and March.
But environmentalists say that much of the forest cover in the area - which would normally absorb some of the rain and prevent the hillsides from slipping - has been cut down in recent years, contributing to the disaster.
Around the East Java village of Kemiri, hundreds of rescue workers and soldiers have been trying to reach a handful of villages still cut off by floods and landslides that swept through the area late on Sunday. Officials on Wednesday put the death toll there at 71, including two rescue workers who drowned in swollen rivers.
Floods and landslides are common in Indonesia, especially at this time of the year when the wet season is in full swing. Many landslides are caused by illegal logging or the clearing of farmland that strips away natural barriers to such disasters.
Last Mod: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16
Source: BBC and Al Jazeera