Yustinus Paat, Jakarta – Floods inundated parts of Jakarta on Saturday, forcing thousands to leave their homes following heavy rains in the past few days.
Sabdo Kurnianto, the interim head of Jakarta's Regional Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD), said 379 families or a total of 1,380 people had to leave their homes as floodwaters reached between 0.4 to 1.8 meters deep, mostly in the South and East Jakarta.
"Several areas that are still affected [by the flood] due to the high rainfall and overflows of Ciliwung River, Krukut River and Pesanggrahan River in South Jakarta, as well as the overflow of PHB Sulaiman, Sunter River, Cipinang River in East Jakarta," in a statement on Saturday.
There were 193 neighborhood units (RT) – the lowest administrative unit in Indonesia that comprises up to 50 households – affected by the flood, Sabdo said. That was about 0.6 percent of Jakarta's 30,470 RTs.
In South Jakarta, 19 people had to leave their flooded homes with water levels measured at between 0.4 to 1.4 meters. A total of 1,361 people in East Jakarta were displaced by the flood, which reached between 0.4 to 1.8 meters deep.
Weather data from the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG) showed moderate to heavy rain fell across the greater Jakarta area at 01.30 a.m. on Saturday, the latest in a series of pouring rains in the past week.
The agency had warned that the capital might see its worst rainfall this season this weekend.
The extreme weather would continue on Saturday, BMKG warned with potential for rain accompanied by lightning and strong winds in the South, West Jakarta, and East Jakarta areas were expected during the day and night, the agency said on its website on Saturday.
Several sections in Jakarta toll roads were inundated and inaccessible, state-controlled toll road operator said on Saturday.
These include Jakarta-Cikampek Toll Road, Jakarta-Tangerang Toll Road, Jagorawi toll roads, and Jakarta Inner Toll Road. Toll road users are advised to take alternative routes while the company was working to pump out the waters.
"Jasa Marga is currently following up on several waterlogging points [...], and we urge road users to anticipate several inundation points on the Jasa Marga Group's toll roads," Dwimawan Heru, the head of corporate communication and community development, in a statement.
State utility firm Perusahaan Listrik Negara (PLN) said it had cut the power to more than 60.000 homes in the greater Jakarta area to eliminate electrocution risk.
Several areas that were still without power include Bintara, Jatiasih, Kalimalang, Cipinang, Pondok Gede Permai, Fatmawati, Kemang, Pejaten, Warung Buncit, Kalibata, Pondok Kacang, Puri Bintari, Jatibening, Jatiwarungin, Pondok Gede, Ciledug, Petukangan, Kampung Makasar, Pinang Ranti, dan Karet Tengsin.
"PLN will restore electricity at the flood site if all the electricity networks on residents homes and PLN are dry and ready for electricity, and both parties sign the minutes of ignition," Doddy B. Pangaribuan, PLN's general manager for Jakarta distribution area, said.