Flood Evacuation Site Is Covid-19 High-Risk Zone: Epidemiologist

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Petir Garda Bhwana

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  • TEMPO.CO, JakartaAn epidemiologist from the University of Indonesia, Tri Yunus Miko Wahyono, asked the government to be aware of Covid-19 transmission in flood evacuation sites considering the density of people has the potential to increase the risk of virus spread.

    “Shelters for flood victims must be watched out. If it is not anticipated, virus transmission can easily occur there,” said Tri via a phone call with Tempo on Tuesday, September 22. “Not only coronavirus but also other diseases.”

    Tri demanded the government immediately draft health protocols for the evacuation places. The number of evacuees, he opined, must be limited in order to prevent crowds. “There should also be officers to supervise the location,” he added.

    According to him, the potential for coronavirus transmission during the rainy and dry season is equally high given the fact that the virus can be transmitted through air, or without physical contact. 

    “Do not let the evacuation site be an infection cluster. The government must prepare health protocols to deal with this seasonal flooding,” Tri remarked.

    Jakarta Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD) spokesperson M. Insyaf reported that as of 9 a.m. today, 56 neighboring units (RT) were still inundated by floodwaters around 10 centimeters to one meter.

    “The evacuation sites have been reduced from four to two locations,” said Insyaf in a statement, adding that there were 38 evacuees in Riyadhul Saadah mosque in Kembangan Utara of West Jakarta and Pengadegan low-cost apartment (Rusunawa) in South Jakarta.

    Read also: Mismanaging Jakarta's Flood

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