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High tides could flood Jakarta: Officials
Mustaqim Adamrah, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta
Jakarta officials on Tuesday warned that high tides in December threatened to flood coastal areas in the city, following an alert sent by the Meteorology and Geophysics Agency. The head of the city’s crisis center, Heru Joko Santoso, said officials were warning that Penjaringan and Pluit subdistricts in North Jakarta would be threatened by high tides between Dec. 8 and 12, and Dec. 20 and 25. “The tides could be worse than the last incident,” he said. Last Monday, battered sea barriers in the two North Jakarta districts were breached by an unusually high tide. Jakarta Deputy Governor Prijanto said all the administration could do was provide an early warning “to alert residents about the high tide, and install a communal kitchen and health tent”.
Heru said expected high rainfall levels in December would exacerbate the high tides, and floodwater could reach as far as the city-owned Laguna Pluit low-cost apartments and the office of the Pluit subdistrict administration.
He said the area around the Riverside apartments in Kapuk Muara subdistrict could also be affected. Heru said tents would be set up around the Penjaringan subdistrict administration office and near Muara Karang bridge, to accommodate those forced from their homes.
He said the crisis center had warned Penjaringan residents about the possibility of flooding. Meanwhile, heavy rain on Monday evening and Tuesday morning inundated hundreds of houses in Cawang subdistrict, East Jakarta, with floodwater reaching chest-level in some areas. Another 1,500 houses in the Pondok Arum housing complex in Tangerang, Banten, were under 1.5 to 2 meters of water.
Flooding also affected Dr. Subki Abdulkadir Islamic Hospital in Bekasi, forcing it to close. Heru said other parts of Jakarta, including Cawang, Kramat Jati and Jatinegara in East Jakarta, Cakung in North Jakarta and Pancoran in South Jakarta, were at risk of flooding because of heavy rain. Governor Fauzi Bowo has met with the governor of neighboring Banten, Ratu Atut Chosiyah, to try and put together a plan on revitalizing water catchment areas along the border between the two provinces.
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