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Jakarta Post

Rain cripples Greater Jakarta

  • Sita W. Dewi

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Sun, February 23, 2014   /  09:52 am
Rain cripples Greater Jakarta Fun in the flood: Children play at an inundated housing area in Tomang, West Jakarta, on Saturday. Heavy downpour caused flooding in several areas of Greater Jakarta beginning early Saturday. (JP/Jerry Adiguna) (JP/Jerry Adiguna)

Fun in the flood: Children play at an inundated housing area in Tomang, West Jakarta, on Saturday. Heavy downpour caused flooding in several areas of Greater Jakarta beginning early Saturday. (JP/Jerry Adiguna)

Incessant and heavy downpour hammered Greater Jakarta on Friday night and throughout Saturday, inundating numerous flood-prone subdistricts and triggering severe traffic gridlock across the capital.

City authorities were standing by to facilitate evacuations.

Kampung Melayu subdistrict in East Jakarta, Karang Tengah and Cilandak districts in South Jakarta and numerous areas in West Jakarta were among the worst hit in the capital, with water levels reaching up to 1 meter.

'€œThe water has risen in Kampung Melayu to 1 meter and we predict that the water might rise even higher at midnight when more floodwater from Bogor reaches Jakarta. A number of areas in West Jakarta will also be heavily affected tonight because the height of the Angke River has reached an alarming level,'€ Jakarta Disaster Mitigation Agency informatics division head Bambang Suryaputra said on Saturday evening.

'€œKedoya, Green Garden, Rawa Buaya, Cengkareng, Kapuk Muara and Tegal Alur will likely be affected.'€

The head of Cilandak district in South Jakarta, Dhany Sukma, said all 12 subdistricts in Cilandak were inundated, with the floodwater ranging from 30 to 150 centimeters.

'€œThe flood also hit a number of houses and displaced more than 300 families. If the rain continues and more people are displaced, they will be accommodated in two shelters, mosques and schools,'€ he said, adding his office had prepared instant noodles, blankets and emergency medicine.

Floodwater also inundated downtown areas and caused massive traffic jams on several major roads, including Jl. Gunung Sahari, Jl. Pangeran Jayakarta and ITC Mangga Dua in North Jakarta; Jl. Gatot Subroto, which runs from South Jakarta to West Jakarta; Jl. Pondok Labu in South Jakarta; Jl. Lt. Gen. Suparman in Grogol, West Jakarta; as well as on inner-city toll roads, which further affected toll roads connecting Jakarta and satellite cities.

'€œIt took five hours to get to Marunda [North Jakarta] from my home in Cijantung [East Jakarta] today. Vehicles got stuck in Cilincing because of the severe conditions on the road,'€ said Indah Setiawati, a resident of Pasar Rebo in East Jakarta.

In neighboring Tangerang, Banten, at least nine housing complexes were reported to be inundated with floodwater ranging from 50 cm to 150 cm deep.

'€œThe number of flooded areas is expected to increase as rain continues,'€ Tangerang Disaster Response Teams (Tagana) chief Iksan Bakti said as quoted by kompas.com.

Iksan added that his personnel were on standby to evacuate residents if water levels continued to rise.

Floodwaters in Tangerang ranged from between 20 cm and 1.5 meters in depth, and affected Total Persada housing complex, Mutiara Peluit housing complex, Alamanda housing complex, Taman Elang housing complex, Garden City housing complex, Jl. Regency Raya and Purati housing complex in Jatiuwung.

City police Traffic Management Center (TMC) reported water levels had reached between 20 cm and 40 cm in a number of areas in Depok, West Java, including on Jl. Margonda Raya, Jl. Arif Rahman Hakim and around Depok bus terminal.

Flooding caused severe traffic jams on Jl. Margonda Raya. In Jakarta, residents were not venturing out from their homes, Bambang said.

'€œResidents are staying on the second floor. No reports of evacuation have come in as of Saturday evening. But emergency personnel and all emergency shelters are ready to assist residents affected by floodwater,'€ he said.

'€œOur main temporary shelters '€” Otista sports center in Bidara Cina and the East Jakarta Health Agency office '€” have been on standby since early this year. We will maintain the situation until March, when the rainy season is expected to end.'€

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