Landslides and flash floods in Indonesia have left at least 20 people dead as torrential downpours continued to pound the nation’s many islands Wednesday.
The main island of Java saw the worst of the flooding, as waters quickly rose to two meters, according to officials. Sixteen people on the island had been confirmed dead, with eight others still missing.
Endah Trisnawati, a spokesman for the West Java Police Disaster Unit, said the flooding was limited to about five or six districts surrounding the overflowing Cimanuk River.
“We have already reported that we’ve found 20 bodies,” he said. “So far, we’ve already identified 15 bodies and five others are still going through the identification process.”
In some cases, flood waters swept away entire houses, forcing more than 1,000 people to take shelter in tents provided by emergency personnel.
Officials warned residents about the potential for further disasters as Indonesia experiences unseasonably heavy rains brought on by the La Nina weather phenomenon.
Similarly heavy rains in June caused massive destruction when flood waters carried mud and rocks into Central Java province, the most populous region on the island. Almost 50 people died in that incident.