JAKARTA, Indonesia – Rescuers struggled to reach more than 100 people missing Saturday after a landslide triggered by torrential rains buried houses in a hilly district on Indonesia's main island of Java. At least three bodies were pulled from the mud, a disaster official said.
About 105 houses were swept away by mud gushing down the hills late Friday into Jemblung village in Banjarnegara district of Central Java province, said Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, a spokesman for the National Disaster Mitigation Agency.
He said rescuers retrieved at least three bodies from a mound of mud late Friday and brought 38 injured villagers to a hospital, four of them in critical condition.
Hundreds of rescuers, including police, soldiers and residents, were digging through the debris with their bare hands, shovels and hoes for 107 people still missing. They were later helped by tractors and bulldozers arriving in the district. About 370 other residents were evacuated to a temporary shelter.
Seasonal downpours cause frequent landslides and flash floods each year in Indonesia, a chain of 17,000 islands where millions of people live in mountainous areas or near fertile flood plains.