Knocking On The Doors Of Those Who Survived The Flood
A group of residents live in the middle of a flood in Ciledug Indah, Tangerang (Yudhistira Mahabharata / VOI)

JAKARTA - Jakarta is flooded. Bekasi people have the same fate. In Tangerang, the water has not receded either. Thursday afternoon, December 2, the residents of Ciledug Indah were still struggling to be immersed when the floods in a number of areas began to recede. Even so, rather than fleeing, hundreds of them chose to stay at home. Yesterday, we went to residents' homes to explore the reasons why they chose to risk surviving in the siege of water.

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Around 17.00 WIB, our feet started touching the water. The large gate with the words "Ciledug Indah" where we glared at our trousers was already behind us at that moment, a few meters from where we were standing. We walked slowly, stepping our feet that triggered the chaotic waves around him. The further we went, our feet sank deeper into the dark brown water. All of our calves are now underwater.

We weren't the only ones walking through the flood. Around us, a number of community members were also visible. Some were walking in the opposite direction to us. Three teenagers were carrying sandals with a burning cigarette in their other hand or a father could be seen dragging the hand of a child swimming wrapped in a tire.

A resident pulls a child swimming with a tire in the middle of a flood (Yudhistira Mahabharata / VOI)

Others walked in the same direction as us. Most of them carry aid packages in large red plastic bags. Indeed, in the vicinity of the housing gate, the local authorities established a post which became the center for the concentration of aid. Residents of housing who need it can take logistics at the post. After receiving logistics, most of the residents returned to their houses which were surrounded by floods.

"As long as the water recedes (taking assistance to the post). Yes, just the assistance (needs). Our evacuation is still safe on the second floor. There are those who evacuate usually whose houses are not level," said a resident, Toto who walked next door. we hugged the plastic filled with instant food and drinking water, Thursday, January 2nd.

It was getting dark. The smell of smoke wafted around. We looked for the source of the smoke and then found a group of residents who settled on the roof of a garage building. On top of the small green building, they burned rubbish to keep warm. A thing that is clearly dangerous. We also asked why they didn't evacuate and chose to stay on top of the building.

"I didn't have time to evacuate ... This (fire) is just for body windings," said one of them briefly.

Group of residents who survive on the roof of the house (Yudhistira Mahabharata / VOI)

It's dark in the printing house

The atmosphere in the Sunarto printing house (Yudhistira Mahabharata / VOI)

A large building caught our attention. The blue fence rises even though it doesn't look solid. The gate was wide open. From the outside, you can see the big machines inside the building. We walked into the building and found a printing press stuck. We walked deeper and deeper, the light disappeared. Pitch black.

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Inside, we were greeted by a man named Sunarto. With a little light from a cell phone, the middle-aged man led us to the second floor of the building. Above, his other colleagues greeted us. Up above, we found a room filled with textbooks. It was so full that there was little room for one person to walk around.

Sunarto said that he and his colleagues were forced to stay because their boss ordered them to look after the printing press, both production equipment and printed books. According to Sunarto, since the floods hit on Wednesday, January 1, his boss has routinely sent food aid for him. For this reason, Sunarto also admitted that he was not interested in the assistance prepared by the authorities at the closest posts.

"Assistance, if my assistance comes from the boss himself. If it comes from the government, not me. It's in front, only we don't go there. From the boss, that's enough," said Sunarto.

Sunarto (Yudhistira Mahabharata / VOI)

Evacuation constraints

At noon long before we arrived at the printing house guarded by Sunarto, we made our way to Ciledug Indah with great difficulty. It was not only water that had blocked our way. The presence of community members watching the floods made it very difficult for the coverage process this time. For us, perhaps not very matters. However, for ambulances, search and rescue cars and evacuation activities and distribution of aid, roads filled with people are clearly an obstacle.

The road to the Ciledug Indah aid post (Yudhistira Mahabharata / VOI)

On that trip, we saw a mother screaming at the crowd, especially motorcyclists who were desperate to break through the barricades. The mother, who was wearing a white headscarf and black and white shirt with chess motifs, questioned the presence of the large crowd there. He also criticized the behavior of the surrounding community which made disasters a spectacle.

"Where are you going? Where are you going? Brother want to evacuate or what do you want? If not concerned, turn back please. Poor people who want to evacuate. People want to help it becomes difficult. Besides, this is not a spectacle either. Turn around, turn around immediately. just everyone! " exclaimed the mother.

Another case, the Head of the National SAR Agency (Basarnas) Bagus Puruhito said that the evacuation was also hampered by the low awareness of residents to evacuate. The lack of awareness of evacuating also has an impact on the confusing data collection on the number of refugees and those who live in the house. For this reason, Basarnas is continuously alerted to monitor developments in the situation.

Head of Basarnas Bagus Puruhito (Mahesa ARK / VOI)

"The water has started to recede. However, tonight I came here to make sure they must continue to carry out surveillance, patrols. Who knows who have not been evacuated or who did not want to be evacuated will eventually become willing. That must be our attention," said Bagus. at location.

"Immediately to evacuate to the evacuation, so that everything can be controlled more easily if put together in the refugee camp with others," added Bagus.

Estuary of the victims

Our quest to answer the question of why people were reluctant to evacuate took us to the surrounding refugee posts. Apart from the tents serving instant food, the authorities used the mosque building to accommodate the victims. At the mosque, volunteers distributed boxed rice. The situation was busy although it was still under control.

The only case that the posko manager complained about was the large number of local people who queued up even though they were not flood victims. "Mother, embarrassed. Sir, please help. This is for those who are disasters. Those whose houses are not flooded, don't join the queue. Shame," shouted an officer from a distance while distributing boxed rice.

Officer argues with a resident (Mahesa ARK / VOI)

Inside the mosque building, the refugees were scattered. From some that we asked, most of them said they would not spend the night in the mosque. They admitted that they would only take a short break after consuming the food aid they received. "Go home after this too. We don't sleep here," said Didi, who went through the flood to get to the post with his wife and child.

Refugee situation in mosques around Ciledug Indah (Yudhistira Mahabharata / VOI)

In addition to evacuation, the mouth of the gathering of the victims is the local hospital. An elderly man who was evacuated from inside the housing looked limp on the boat. His body was immediately carried by the joint team. Unfortunately, arriving on the mainland, the man had to wait for an ambulance - which was not yet available because he was still driving other victims - before finally being transported to the nearest hospital. According to a medical officer we met, the average victim was rushed to Sari Asih Hospital or Mulya Hospital, Ciledug.

Evacuation of a grandfather in Ciledug Indah (Mahesa ARK / VOI)

One day before setting foot there, a grandmother died in Ciledug Indah. The 75-year-old woman named Nining reportedly died from a history of certain diseases that had relapsed due to flooding. Until this news was written, at least three people died from floods in Ciledug, Tangerang.

Besides Nining, a 53-year-old man known as Aceng also died. Most recently, a resident found his grandmother died this morning at around 10:00 WIB while cleaning the house. According to the authorities, the strongest suspicion to date, all of the victims aged over 50 died from cold or hypothermia. With all the conditions, is survival still a good choice?

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