Landslide Smashes Indonesian Village, Dozens Feared Dead
JAKARTA, Indonesia – Landslides triggered by heavy rains swept down on a village on Indonesia's Java island at dawn Wednesday, burying homes beneath tons of mud and leaving dozens of people missing and feared dead, officials said.
Most residents of Cijeruk, a village of about 200 people, were at home sleeping or performing early morning Muslim prayers when the landslide tumbled down from a nearby mountain, local government official Supriyanto told The Associated Press.
Budi Warityo, a police officer at the village in central Java, told The AP that so far only 12 people had been rescued and one body had been recovered, but that many of the remaining 200 people were missing and believed killed.
"The rest of the villagers are feared to be buried under the mud," he said by telephone from the scene, about 130 miles east of Jakarta.
Meanwhile on the east of Java, rescuers tried to find survivors from a series of landslides and flash floods that killed at least 57 people and left dozens other missing earlier this week, officials said.
The mud and water destroyed bridges and roads in the already isolated area in Jember district, cutting of at least two villages two days after the disaster, el-Shinta radio reported.
Heavy tropical downpours cause dozens of landslides and flash floods each year in Indonesia, where millions of people live in mountainous regions and near fertile flood plains close to rivers.