( AFP ) - Landslides triggered by heavy rains left 33 people dead and 41 missing on the main Indonesian island of Java on Wednesday, officials said.
Landslides hit villages in densely populated Central Java's Karanganyar and Wonogiri districts early Wednesday after downfalls soaked the area.
Soldiers and rescuers used their bare hands in the search for victims.
Edi Susanto, from Karanganyar's disaster management centre, told AFP that 30 bodies had been recovered and 29 people remained missing in seven different locations.
One family of four died after a landslide slammed into their home.
"I was involved in the rescue. The husband was actually evacuated and survived, but knowing that his wife and two children had died, he went into shock and made his condition worse. He later died," Susanto said.
A truck carrying three men also careened into a river as it tried to avoid a landslide, which are not unusual across Indonesia in hilly and volcanic areas during the monsoon season.
"We've just found the three dead bodies in the river," Susanto added.
A policeman in Wonogiri district to the south told AFP that three bodies had been recovered but 12 others remained missing there.
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono relayed his sympathies to the families of the deceased.
"The president sends his deepest condolences and has ordered the home affairs minister to coordinate with local officials and monitor the emergency response," his spokesman, Andi Mallarangeng, told Metro TV.
District police chief Ridwanto told local ElShinta radio that 300 police had been deployed to the affected areas.
Metro TV showed footage of one landslide blocking a main road leading to an affected area being cleared with heavy machinery to allow traffic through.
Meanwhile floods were affecting other parts of Central Java. TV footage showed people clutching their belongings above their heads as they sloshed through muddy brown water reaching chest height.
Indonesia has been repeatedly afflicted by deadly floods and landslides in recent years, with activists warning that logging and a failure to reforest denuded land in the world's fourth most populous country are often to blame.
In July, almost 90 people were killed after floods and rains hit Sulawesi island.