Indonesia grapples with deadly landslides and flooding, leaving 15 dead

The landslides hit Luwu regency in South Sulawesi province on Friday, just after 1 am local time, according to Abdul Muhari, the spokesperson for Indonesia’s disaster mitigation agency (BNPB). “A total of 14 residents died due to floods and landslides in Luwu regency, South Sulawesi province,” he stated.

Tragedy struck central Indonesia as landslides and flooding ravaged the region, claiming the lives of at least 15 people and causing widespread destruction. The country’s disaster agency revealed the details on Saturday, May 4th.

Indonesia, an archipelagic nation, is prone to landslides during the rainy season, a problem exacerbated by deforestation in some areas. Prolonged torrential rains have also led to flooding in various parts of the country.

The landslides hit Luwu regency in South Sulawesi province on Friday, just after 1 am local time, according to Abdul Muhari, the spokesperson for Indonesia’s disaster mitigation agency (BNPB). “A total of 14 residents died due to floods and landslides in Luwu regency, South Sulawesi province,” he stated.

The agency reported that more than 100 houses were seriously damaged, and 42 were swept away by the powerful force of the landslides and floodwaters. Four roads and one bridge were also damaged, further complicating relief efforts.

Authorities have evacuated more than 100 people to mosques or relatives’ homes, and they are working to evacuate the more than 1,300 families affected by the disaster.

The early morning floods in Luwuk regency affected more than 1,300 families and damaged over 1,800 houses, although water levels have started to recede in some areas, according to the agency.

In another area of South Sulawesi province, at least one person died, and two others were injured in floods on Friday, Abdul said in a separate statement.

These tragic events come just months after flash floods and landslides on Sumatra island killed at least 30 people in March, with scores still missing. In December, a landslide and flooding swept away dozens of houses and destroyed a hotel near Lake Toba on Sumatra, claiming at least two lives.

Indonesia has suffered a string of recent extreme weather events during its rainy season, which experts say are made more likely by climate change. The country’s vulnerability to natural disasters highlights the urgent need for better preparedness and mitigation measures to safeguard lives and property.