44 killed in flash floods and landslides


Restless Earth: The aftermath of a flash flood in the village of Lamanele in East Flores. — AFP

At least 44 people were killed after flash floods and landslides swept an island in Indonesia’s easternmost province, rescue officials said, adding they expected the toll to rise.

“There are 44 people dead with nine injured” in East Flores, and “many are still under the mud”, National Disaster Mitigation Agency spokesman Raditya Jati said.

Hours before people woke to celebrate Easter, torrential rain unleashed flash floods in the Catholic-majority Flores Island.

Mud inundated homes, while bridges and roads in the eastern end of the island were destroyed.

Rescuers are struggling to reach the remote and worst-hit area in East Flores regency.

“The only access there is by the sea from Adonara Island, but the rains – as well as strong waves – have prevented any crossing, ” Raditya said yesterday. — AFP

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