Connect with us


West Sumatra devastated by floods and cold lava: 41 dead, 17 missing

The National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) of Indonesia reported 41 fatalities and 17 individuals missing following cold lava floods in West Sumatra. Heavy rains triggered flash floods from Mount Marapi, sweeping through villages. Search efforts continue.



Condition of residential areas and public facilities (Photo; BPBD Agam Regency)

WEST SUMATRA, INDONESIA: The National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) reported a devastating toll of 41 fatalities and 17 individuals still missing as of Monday (13 May), following cold lava floods in West Sumatra.

The catastrophe unfolded when heavy rains pounded the upstream area of Mount Marapi, triggering cold lava flash floods that struck the region on Saturday evening (11 May).

These relentless rains, combined with a significant mudslide from a cold lava flow on Mount Marapi, breached riverbanks and inundated villages across four districts in West Sumatra province just before midnight on Saturday.

Over 100 houses and buildings were submerged, and people were swept away by the raging floods, according to Abdul Muhari, the Head of the BNPB Disaster Data, Information, and Communication Center.

The impact was particularly severe in Agam District, Tanah Datar District, Padang Panjang District, and Padang Pariaman District.

On Monday (13 May), Abdul Muhari stated, “As of Sunday at 9:00 pm, the total number of victims who died as a result of this disaster was 37 people.”

Victims were distributed across Agam, Tanah Datar, Padang Panjang, and Padang Pariaman.

Efforts to identify the remaining two victims are ongoing, with reports dynamically adjusted against records of recovered victims and those still being sought by the National Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas) and the Indonesian National Army-Indonesian Police (TNI-POLRI).

Search and rescue operations have been temporarily halted due to inadequate nighttime lighting in the affected area and concerns about heightened rainfall in the upstream regions.

Meanwhile, 17 individuals remain missing, with 14 from Tanah Datar and three from Agam.

Search efforts are scheduled to resume on Monday (13 May).

The Mount Marapi Observation Post detected rising rain vibrations at Batu Palano Station since Sunday evening, prompting concerns regarding potential hazards in the area.

In response, the BNPB issued an appeal to residents residing near the riverbanks originating from Mount Marapi, emphasizing the importance of remaining vigilant and being prepared for further risks.

Residents are strongly advised to take proactive measures, including evacuating to safer locations independently.

Additionally, flash floods on Saturday night resulted in the blockage of main roads in Tanah Datar district due to mud, effectively isolating the area from neighbouring cities.

Circulating videos on social media showcased the severity of the cold lava flood, further highlighting the impact on affected communities.



Share this post via:
Continue Reading
Click to comment
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments