50 killed as Indonesia dam bursts

March 27th, 2009 - 5:10 pm ICT by ANI  

Jakarta (Indonesia), Mar.27 (ANI): A dam has burst southwest of the Indonesian capital Jakarta, killing at least 50 people.

Witnesses said a “horrifying” flash flood of water up to 4m (13ft) deep engulfed hundreds of homes in Cirendeu in the Tangerang district.

The BBC quoted officials as saying that they expect the death toll to rise.

It is not clear what caused the dam to burst, but an official said the Situ Gintung lake behind the dam became overloaded after hours of heavy rain.

Thick mud is hampering rescue teams, but the waters have now begun to recede.

Television footage showed rescue workers wading through deep water and bodies being pulled from the mud.

The authorities have sent 150 body bags.

Local media said Indonesia’s President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono was planning to travel to the scene of the disaster. Vice-President Yusuf Kalla and Welfare Minister Aburizal Bakrie have already visited the site. (ANI)

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