UPDATE 1: Papua Flash Floods Kill 56

UPDATE 1: Papua Flash Floods Kill 56

JAYAPURA

At least 56 people were killed and 24 remain missing after flash floods in a remote region of Papua, a disaster management official said on Tuesday.

“We just received information from local officials there that 56 people were killed and 24 people went missing,” Dani Kismianto said.

The floods were unleashed early on Monday after torrential downpours that began late Sunday in West Papua’s Teluk Wondama district.

Kisianto said that 81 people were seriously injured and most of them had been flown to hospitals in neighbouring districts of Nabire and Manokwari.

“We reckon that the death toll will increase as the terrain conditions make it hard for the rescuers to reach them,” he said adding that the affected areas are mountainous.

Officials said that communication lines had been cut off and roads to the affected areas were blocked by fallen trees.

Thousands of buildings including houses, schools and offices were badly damaged and bridges had collapsed, officials said on Monday.

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