Indonesia’s most active volcano Mount Merapi erupted on Wednesday with a river of lava and searing gas clouds flowing 1,500 meters down its slopes.
Head of Indonesia’s volcanology and geological hazard mitigation centre, Kasbani said Merapi had spewed “quite intense” hot clouds at least 30 times since Wednesday morning and warned of a danger of lava cutting roads near the volcano.
Authorities in November last year had evacuated nearly 2,000 people living on the mountain in Magelang and Sleman districts on Java Island but most have since returned. There has been no new evacuation.
This is Mount Merapi’s biggest lava flow since November.
Indonesia, an archipelago of 270 million people, is prone to earthquakes and volcanic activity because it sits along the Pacific “Ring of Fire,” a horseshoe-shaped series of seismic fault lines around the ocean.
Authorities have told people to stay out of the existing 5-kilometer danger zone around the crater as the local administrations in Central Java and Yogyakarta provinces closely monitor the situation.