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Increasing death toll after tidal wave Jakarta

By Richard van der Draay     Mar 27, 2009 in Environment
A huge tidal wave, caused by a dam break south-west of the Indonesian capital Jakarta, has led to the death of at least fifty people.
Tens of people are still missing and five hundred homes have been destroyed.
The death toll is expected to rise further, according to Indonesian authorities in a statement to the BBC.
Water and mud washed over the suburb of Cirendeu in the Tangerang district at 02.00 AM local time and took many inhabitants by complete surprise.
Survivors describe the disaster that took place after heavy rain fall and severe winds as ‘a tsunami’. In some places the water level had risen to at least six metres.
Rescue personnel are still retrieving bodies from the mud. Rubber boats are being used to evacuate survivors. They are looked after in a building belonging to the local University.
The Indonesian authorities have come under criticism because the dam was out of date and maintenance of the dams and dykes in the city had been unsatisfactory. The last time maintenance was carried out was twenty-five years ago.
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