Floods, volcanic mudflows leave 52 killed, buildings severely damaged in West Sumatra

Indonesia's floods, volcanic mudflows leave 52 killed, buildings severely damaged

Indonesia floods
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Cold lava floods in West Sumatra province of Indonesia left several houses destroyed besides public buildings, while the fatalities mounted to 52, a senior official of a local disaster agency said on Tuesday.

Search for the missing persons resumed and heavy machinery equipment had been deployed to help with the operation, said Ilham Wahab, head of the rehabilitation and reconstruction unit of the provincial disaster management and mitigation agency.

"The number of bodies found is 52 now, and the missing number is 17. These figures will keep changing as people keep reporting about their missing family members," he told media. The ongoing emergency relief efforts would be followed by a reconstruction and rehabilitation program soon, he noted.

Experts are being roped in to decide whether to relocate the residents living in danger zones such as riverside whose upstream is at the slopes of the Merapi volcano and Singgalang volcano, which keep erupting and throwing up volcanic materials, he said.

According to Lieutenant General Suharyanto, head of the National Disaster Management and Mitigation Agency, the natural disaster has left more than 3,000 people leave their homes and take shelter at safer grounds.

"Repair of the damaged roads is among the priorities during the relief efforts," he said, adding that the fulfilment of the basic needs of the flood-affected residents would be met.

Heavy rains on Saturday night triggered the waters of the rivers to overflow their banks, striking the regencies of Agam, Tanah Datar Pariaman, and Padang Panjang town.