Published on : Monday, January 6, 2014
Mount Sinabung in western Indonesia rumbled and spewed blistering gas farther than expected, sending panicked residents streaming down the sides of the mountain. The authorities have extended the danger zone.
The explosion triggered off just after midnight and panicked evacuation. Men with ash-covered faces streamed down the scorched slopes on motorcycles, followed by truckloads of women and children, many crying. Officials barked out orders on bullhorns as rocks and debris rained from the sky.More than 50 eruptions on Saturday sent lava and searing gas tumbling out of the volcano in North Sumatra province down the southeastern slopes up to five kilometres away, said Indonesia’s disaster mitigation.
The volcano was still spitting clouds of gas and lava as high as 4,000 metres in several eruptions, but no casualties were reported. The danger zone southeast of the volcano was extended from five to seven kilometres from the crater’s smouldering mouth.
The rescue mission was conducted by soldiers in two villages of Jewara and Pintu Besi, about seven kilometres from the crater where grey dust covered homes and farms. More than 20,000 people have been evacuated from villages around the crater into several temporary shelters since authorities raised the alert status for Sinabung to the highest level in November.
The residents of the village said that they have lost everything and are wondering what will happen to their lives after the disaster ends.
Mount Sinabung, the 2,600-meter high volcano erupted intermittently since September. In 2010, two people were killed which caught scientists completely off guard as the volcano had been dormant for more than four centuries.
Among the 130 active volcanoes in Indonesia, Mount Sinabung is prone to seismic upheaval due to its location on the Pacific “Ring of Fire”. People had already been warned to avoid the route near the mountain.