Gov’t Carries Out Emergency Response in North Luwu
Date 17 Juli 2020
Following President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s order, Minister of Public Works and Public Housing (PUPR) Basuki Hadimuljono on Thursday (16/7) inspected the location of flash flood that hit Masamba District in North Luwu Regency, South Sulawesi Province.
According to the Minister, Ministry of Public Works and Public Housing together with a joint team consisting of South Sulawesi provincial administration, the Indonesian National Defense Forces (TNI), the Indonesian National Police (Polri), the National Search and Rescue Agency (Basarnas), and the North Luwu Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD), have successfully opened access from Palopo to Masamba that previously was blocked by mud to a depth of 2 meters . “Now, it takes around 90 minutes from Palopo to Masamba the Minister said.
To help remove mud, the Ministry has deployed ten heavy equipment, including four excavators, two bulldozers, and four dump trucks to Radda Village, the most severely hit area. In addition, two excavators will be mobilized from the North Luwu District Public Works Office, one unit will be provided from the North Luwu District Agriculture Office, while another unit will be provided by a working partner.
Basuki added that regarding emergency response, there are three measures to be taken. “First, to open access from Palopo to Masamba within three days, particularly flooded roads that still covered with mud in Masamba District. Second, to clean Masamba District and its surrounding areas from mud. Third, regarding permanent handling, the Government will carry out river normalization project that includes river dredging, river channel rehabilitation, as well as river embankment construction with permanent structure,” he said.
On that occasion, Basuki ordered that the mud cleared from the residential area should be put into geobags to be used as a temporary embankment for three rivers (Rongkong, Radda and Masamba) to prevent material overflow from the river during rain in the upstream.
“Based on my own observation, the banks of Radda River were severely affected by the flash flood. Thus, houses along the banks should be relocated as part of the river normalization project. The Ministry will cooperate with the North Luwu Regency administration to relocate the houses,” Basuki said.
To help the emergency response, he added, the Government appointed PT. Brantas Abipraya to carry out emergency response around the Masamba River and PT. Hutama Karya in areas affected by overflowing Rongkong River and Radda River, including road and bridge repairs.
According to Basuki, a temporary analysis showed that the flash flood was caused by water flow obstructions in in the upstream and landslide due to high intensity rainfall 220 mm/day.
For the record on Monday night (13/7), an avalanche of water carrying mud and large tree trunks from overflowing rivers tore through North Luwu Regency. The flash flood also caused Andi Jemma Airport covered with mud.
Besides deploying heavy equipment, the Ministry also provided one unit of water tank truck with a capacity of 4,000 liters, 10 units of Public Hydrants with a capacity of 2,000 litres to meet clean water demand, 1,000 sacks, as well as food packages for refugees.
On that occasion, South Sulawesi Governor Nurdin Abdullah and North Luwu Regent Indah Putri Indriani expressed their gratitude for the attention of the Central Government in handling the disaster. The Provincial Government and Regency administration will prepare temporary shelters for residents whose houses are buried in mud. (BKP Kementerian PUPR/EN)
Translated by: Syarifah Aisyah
Reviewed by: Mia Medyana