The Merapi volcano in Indonesia erupted today (June 21) spewing ash and hot gas as high as six kilometres into the sky.
Violent rumbling was heard from villagers several miles away as the dark grey ash cloud blanketed homes and roads.
The country’s Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation Center did not raise Merapi’s alert status, which already was at the third-highest level since it began erupting last August.
Officials said the volcano Mount Merapi erupted two times – at 9:13am and 9:25am western Indonesia time.
BPPTKG Yogyakarta said the first eruption reached 6,000 meters in height and lasted 328 seconds with a 75 millimeter amplitude, while the second eruption lasted 100 seconds.
Head of the Yogyakarta Geological Disaster Technology Research and Development Center (BPPTKG), Hanik Humaida, said: ”The ash column was observed to be gray with a thick intensity leaning towards the west.
“This eruption was recorded on a seismogram with a maximum amplitude of 75 mm and a duration of 5 minutes 28 seconds.
“The current danger is hot clouds rolling down from the peak and other volcanic material from an explosive eruption.”
The public should stay outside a 3-kilometer radius of the peak to avoid any possible danger. The center also advised residents living near Merapi to be on alert for volcanic ash and possible lava flow, especially if rain falls around Merapi’s peak.
National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) spokesperson Raditya Jati said that, as of Sunday morning, villages in eight districts surrounding Merapi had experienced ash rains, with the torrent of ash in Srumbung district being the most severe.
Mount Merapi is one of the most active volcanoes in Indonesia. An eruption in 2010 left more than 300 people dead and forced almost 400,000 people to take refuge. More volcano news on Strange Sounds and Steve Quayle. [The Jakarta Post]