Thousands flee floods in Indonesian capital

February 2, 2007 08:40


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Two days of severe rains caused the worst flooding in five years in the Indonesian capital Friday, washing into thousands of homes and forcing residents to flee, witnesses and officials said. Filthy storm water inundated markets, hospitals and businesses as people used inflatable rafts to retrieve their belongings from houses. Water was four-meters (13 feet) deep in some places in Jakarta, home to some 12 million. With many of the city's roads inaccessible, commuters spent several hours in gridlock trying to get to work. Many were unable to reach the central business district and returned home. City officials said almost 80 districts where faced with serious flooding with more rain forecast. Electricity was cut to more than 22,000 subscribers in downtown Jakarta and tap water was also shut off in some areas as a safety precaution because of possible pollution.

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