Indonesia Landslide Rescuers Buried As They Help Victims

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Indonesia Landslide Rescuers Buried As They Help Victims

Rescuers searching for victims of a landslide in Indonesia were buried by a second mudslide just hours later, officials say.

The first landslide, in Cihanjuang village, West Java, was triggered by torrential rain.

Another struck as survivors were still being evacuated. At least 12 people died and dozens more are missing.

Landslides are common in Indonesia during rainy season, and often blamed on deforestation.

The latest disasters hit the villagers in Sumedang regency, about 150km (95 miles) southeast of the capital Jakarta, three and a half hours apart on Saturday.

The first happened at 16:00 (09:00 GMT) and the second at 19:30 (12:30 GMT), disaster agency spokesman Raditya Jati said in a statement.

“The first landslide was triggered by high rainfall and unstable soil conditions. The subsequent landslide occurred while officers were still evacuating victims around the first landslide area,” he added.

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Rescuers are believed to be among those killed, he added. A six-year-old boy was also among the dead, according to AFP news agency.

Some 27 people were believed to be missing late on Sunday, local media quoted Deden Ridwansah, the head of the local search and rescue agency as saying. About 46 were known to have survived.

“The potential for Jakarta to be submerged isn’t a laughing matter,” says Heri Andreas, who has studied Jakarta’s land subsidence for the past 20 years at the Bandung Institute of Technology.

“If we look at our models, by 2050 about 95% of North Jakarta will be submerged.”

It’s already happening – North Jakarta has sunk 2.5m in 10 years and is continuing to sink by as much as 25cm a year in some parts, which is more than double the global average for coastal megacities.

Jakarta is sinking by an average of 1-15cm a year and almost half the city now sits below sea level.

The impact is immediately apparent in North Jakarta.

In the district of Muara Baru, an entire office building lies abandoned. It once housed a fishing company but the first-floor veranda is the only functional part left.

Bad weather had forced the search to be suspended, he said, but it was expected to resume on Monday.

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Indonesia Landslide Rescuers Buried As They Help Victims

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