Floods trigger chaos in Indonesia's capital Jakarta, commuters badly affected

A security officer standing near a new Toyota car as flooding hits Kelapa Gading business district in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015.
A security officer standing near a new Toyota car as flooding hits Kelapa Gading business district in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015.
Policemen resting on an inflatable raft at the flooded Kelapa Gading business district in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Policemen resting on an inflatable raft at the flooded Kelapa Gading business district in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Lotte Mart customers making their way across the car park at the flooded Kelapa Gading business district in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Lotte Mart customers making their way across the car park at the flooded Kelapa Gading business district in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Policemen resting on an inflatable raft at the flooded Kelapa Gading business district in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Policemen resting on an inflatable raft at the flooded Kelapa Gading business district in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
People wading through a flooded street at Kelapa Gading business district in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
People wading through a flooded street at Kelapa Gading business district in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
People wading across a road at the flooded Kelapa Gading street in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
People wading across a road at the flooded Kelapa Gading street in Jakarta on Jan 23, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

JAKARTA (JAKARTA POST/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - The heavy rain that inundated Greater Jakarta from Thursday night into Friday morning triggered chaos across the capital, as floods hit dozens of spots and the infrastructure in several key locations.

The commuter line serving Depok-Jatinegara was disrupted on Friday morning as water inundated several railway stations, including Kampung Bandan and Rajawali.

Meanwhile, trains serving Bekasi-Kota were forced to stop at Manggarai station due to flooding. Commuter line operator PT KCJ later provided a feeder service to transport stranded commuters from Jatinegara to Kemayoran station.

The commuter line official Twitter account, @CommuterLine, was busy from early morning providing updates on commuter line services, as well as answering commuters' questions about disruptions.

Mr Taufan SD, who works in BSD City, was among commuters affected by the chaos.

"I departed from Duri station, but my train stopped at Kampung Bandan. I had to wait for an hour to continue my journey to my office," he told The Jakarta Post on Friday.

Other office workers preferred to avoid being trapped in congestion and the unpredictable state of public transportation.

"On a day like this, all I want to do is to text my boss and say I can't make it to the office because of flooding and stay at home," complained one commuter Ade Nurhayati.

An employee of Intel Indonesia, Mr Fauzy Herliansyah, decided to take the day off after floodwaters came into his house in Bendungan Melayu, Koja, North Jakarta.

"It's been more than five years since my house was flooded. Water overflowed as the authorities demolished an embankment at a nearby river for a dredging project, so floodwater started to come into the houses in the neighborhood at about 3 am," he said.

Mr Fauzy and other residents later moved their cars to Artha Gading shopping mall in anticipation of worsening floods, during which Mr Fauzy witnessed dozens of motorcycles trapped in a flooded section of road near Kelapa Gading bus shelter at 6am.

Mr Antonius Djatmiko, the principal of St. Peter elementary school in Kelapa Gading, North Jakarta, decided to close the school for the day as access was almost impossible.

"The school compound was fine but the access roads to the school were inundated with water reaching between 20cm and 40cm," he said, pointing out that 341 students were affected.

The Jakarta Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD) reported that North Jakarta suffered the largest number of floods.

Thirty-six areas in five municipalities were inundated, comprising 25 spots in North Jakarta, three in East Jakarta, three in South Jakarta, four in West Jakarta and one in Central Jakarta.

"The floodwater ranged from 10 to 100 centimeters deep," BPBD spokesman Bambang Suryaputra said.

The worst flooding, he said, occurred in North Jakarta's Rawa Binangun in Rawa Badak Utara, as floodwater reached 1m in depth.

Meanwhile, Kampung Pulo in East Jakarta was also hit by a 1m-deep flood.

Jakarta Governor Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama blamed narrowing rivers as the cause of flooding in North Jakarta.

He added that the water pumps in Sentiong River had not been repaired yet, while the ones in Ancol, North Jakarta, had yet to be installed.