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17 dead in Indonesia landslides

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Landslide buries young and old
  • 17 people confirmed dead after landslides in Indonesia
  • 29 still missing after landslides buried some 50 homes
  • Clogged roads and downed communication lines hampering rescue effort
  • Landslides occurred in area of Ciwidey in province of West Java

Jakarta, Indonesia (CNN) -- The death toll from the massive landslides in Indonesia rose to 17 Wednesday, officials said.

Rescue workers were also trying to find 29 people who were still missing after landslides buried some 50 homes with debris, said Priyadi Kardono, spokesman for the National Disaster Management Agency.

The landslides occurred on Tuesday in the area of Ciwidey in the province of West Java after torrential downpours, Kardono said.

Rescuers were just able to get heavy machinery to the landslide area Wednesday morning because roadways were clogged.

After the landslide: Mud, sweat, tears, death

Video: Community buried under mud

Hundreds of rescue workers, the police, the army and volunteers dug frantically, some with their bare hands, trying to find survivors although some began feeling their efforts would bring grim results.

"The chances of survival are zero, because this landslide is entirely mud. There will be no chance of air pockets" said Sumarsono, the Indonesian Red Cross disaster management chief.

CNN's Andy Saputra and Kathy Quiano contributed to this report.