Residents take a look at a car damaged after being swept away in a flash flood in Pasawahan village, Cicurug, Sukabumi, on Tuesday. (Antara Photo/Yulius Satria)

At Least Two People Die in Sukabumi Flash Flood

BY :YUSTINUS PAAT, JAYANTY NADA SHOFA, ASNI OVIER

SEPTEMBER 22, 2020

Jakarta. At least two people have died in a flash flood that hit Sukabumi, West Java, on Monday evening, according to the National Disaster Mitigation Agency, or BNPB.

A heavy downpour caused Citarik and Cipeuncit rivers to overflow, triggering the flash flood in Sukabumi on Monday at 5.00 p.m. The floodwaters even reached five to six meters with Cicurug, Parung Kuda, and Cidahu as the three worst-affected sub-districts.

A joint search and rescue team has retrieved the bodies of two people who went missing when the flash flood struck Cicurug. The team is still looking for one other missing person possibly swept away in floodwaters.

“[Current] data shows 299 families are affected, 210 people evacuated and at least 20 people were injured. Those wounded have been referred to a hospital,” BNPB spokesman Raditya Jati said in a statement on Tuesday.

Sukabumi’s disaster mitigation agency (BPBD Sukabumi) is also still gathering data on the damage caused, Raditya added.

Previously, BPBD Sukabumi reported 12 houses in Cicurug had drifted away and 85 others were submerged.

Flood-Hit Factory
Bottled water producer Aqua Golden Mississippi had to temporarily stop the operational activities at their flood-hit factory in Mekarsari village, Cicurug.

A video of the inundated Aqua factory has recently gone viral. The scene of water gallons drifting in brown-colored water has caused many to worry about the water quality. In response, Danone Indonesia assured the public need not to worry about their products.

"All products and materials affected by the flood will be destroyed. All production facilities will be cleaned following the protocols and hygiene standards before returning to production," Danone Indonesia spokesman Arif Mujahidin told online media Detik on Tuesday.

The paused operational activities was also to ensure the safety of employees and products, Arif said.

More Rainfall
The Meteorology, Climatology, and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) forecasted a heavy rainfall across the archipelago throughout the week as the country transitions to the wet season. 

On Monday night precisely at 6.18 p.m., the water level in Bogor's Katulampa dam had reached 250 centimeters or a warning status of alert level 1 after a downpour in Bogor. The alert level eventually dropped to alert level 4.

Rain also showered Jakarta throughout Monday night, causing several roads and neighborhood units (RT) to be inundated.

BPBD Jakarta reported as of Tuesday noon at 12.00 p.m., 48 RT and one road were still inundated with water. Fifteen people were also still taking shelter at the post in Riyadhuul Saadah Mushola in North Kembangan.

Meanwhile, the Jakarta gov't has begun to prepare evacuation shelters that comply with health protocols as the flooding would coincide with the pandemic.

"Other than providing masks, there should be physical distancing [in the shelters] so people are safe from potential Covid-19 transmission," Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan said in Jakarta on Monday.

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