Mount Sinabung Erupts Spewing Ash Three Miles Into The Air
Mount Sinabung, an Indonesian volcano on the island of Sumatra, has erupted, sending plumes of ash and smoke three miles high into the air.
There’s been more than a year of volcanic rumbling on the island, with today’s eruption, August 10, coming after a previous eruption on Saturday, August 8.
According to Indonesia’s Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation Centre, there’s been no reported injuries or fatalities at the time of writing. However, locals have been asked to stay at least three miles away from the crater’s mouth, having been warned of the dangers of flowing lava.
As reported by Sky News, Armen Putra, an official at the Mount Sinabung observation post, said that the mountain’s surrounding villages have been plunged into darkness by the explosion, with ash clouds spreading through the skies for up to 12 miles.
Saturday’s eruption, while smaller, still saw ash soar 2,000 metres into the air. Afterwards, fellow observation official Muhammad Nurul Asrori told The Jakarta Post: ‘We need to stay cautious because Mount Sinabung’s status is still at level III [alert].’
Natanael Perangin-angin, the Karo Disaster Mitigation Agency’s acting chairman, also said following Saturday’s eruption: ‘We thought we were safe. I hope there won’t be another eruption.’
With today’s eruption, local resident Fachrur Rozi Pasi told Reuters: ‘The sound was like thunder, it lasted for less than 30 seconds.’ Thousands of face masks have been distributed to locals in order to protect themselves from the fallout, with military and law enforcement helping to clean up ash.
Gilbert Sembiring, who was visiting a friend in Naman Teran Kampung at the time of the eruption, added: ‘The situation around Mount Sinabung is very dark now. It was bigger than the eruption a couple of days ago.’
Mount Sinabung, which stands at 2,460 metres tall at its peak, had been dormant for more than 400 years – until an eruption killed 16 people in 2010. Two years later, another eruption killed seven people.
As per The Independent, the volcanic activity over the past decade has seen more than 30,000 locals leaving their homes situated around the mountain.
Indonesia sits on the Pacific ‘Ring of Fire’, an area of volcanoes and fault lines that is particularly prone to volcanic activity. Mount Sinabung is just one of 120 active volcanoes across the country.
However, while the skies are filled with ash and smoke, the civil aviation authority said flights are still operating in the region.
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CreditsSky News and 3 others
The Jakarta Post