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 Villagers Flee North Sumatra Eruption

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BerichtOnderwerp: Villagers Flee North Sumatra Eruption    Villagers Flee North Sumatra Eruption  Icon_minitimezo 15 sep 2013 - 7:53





The Jakarta Globe, September 15, 2013.


A volcano in the Karo district of North Sumatra erupted Sunday morning, forcing hundreds to evacuate nearby villages.

“Evacuees have been placed in buildings and houses around the Karo district offices,” said Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, a spokesman for the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB). “We’re still gathering data on their number.”

Fire and thick, black smoke started billowing from the crater of Mount Sinabung at around 3 a.m., according to reports from the Mount Sinabung watch-post. Volcanic ash and small rocks soon began landing on the villages of Sukameriah, Kutarayat and Kutagugung.

Village residents have been evacuated or have left of their own volition. The Center for Vulcanology and Geological Disaster Mitigation (PVMBG) raised the volcano’s alert status from Level II, “Waspada,” to Level III, “Siaga,” with Level IV being the most severe. The government has closed down all human activity within three kilometers of the crater.

No damage or injuries have yet been reported, according to Sutopo. But the response has been progressing slowly, he added, because the BNPB do not maintain a field office in Karo.

“A fast-response team from the BNPB North Sumatra office is heading to the location to coordinate with the Karo district head,” he said.

After an eruption in 1600, Mount Sinabung was dormant for more than 400 years. It resumed activity in 2010.



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BerichtOnderwerp: Evacuated Mount Sinabung Villagers Ask for Aid    Villagers Flee North Sumatra Eruption  Icon_minitimema 16 sep 2013 - 7:17





The Jakarta Globe, September 16, 2013.


Tanah Karo. In the wake of a volcanic eruption on Sunday morning that displaced nearly 5,000 villagers in the North Sumatra province of Karo, refugees have been asking for services and medical attention.

“We expect the government to give aid such as blankets, milk and special food for babies,” said Nurliana beru Ginting, a 42-year-old refugee from the village of Sukandebi and the mother of three young children.

Many evacuees needed medical support, and some had coughs or high fevers, she added.

As the refugees fled, some were exposed to volcanic ash.

“There are many refugees starving in the middle of the night,” Nurliana said. “The cold weather, especially in the open-air shelters, makes us suffer. The soup kitchen is not operating at full capacity yet.”

Elisa beru Tarigan, 37, said parents were clothing children in sarongs and multiple layers to keep them warm and were worried that air conditions might make children sick. She said that a medical team was needed in every refugee locations, in her view.

So far 4,739 people have fled Mount Sinabung and taken refuse in eight shelters. The largest shelters are Jembur Sempakata, which has taken in 1,453 people, and GBKP Kota, which has taken 1,400.

Weather services reported rain and a low of 24 degrees Celsius in the province.

Climbers survive

Of the 25 mountain climbers who were on the volcano’s slopes during the eruption, all survived.

“The climbers are confirmed safe and they have all left the Mount Sinabung area,” Jhonson Tarigan, public relations coordinator for the Sinabung disaster mitigation efforts, told Indonesian news portal Antaranews.com.

Jhonson said the climbers came from Aceh, Medan and several other areas in North Sumatra, and that they had all returned to their homes.

He said that the climbers were not supposed to have climbed the volcano, because the area had been at alert” status [level II] and later raised to “ready” status [level III] on the Center for Vulcanology and Geological Disaster Mitigation’s four-point scale. The Center declared a three-kilometer off-limits zone around the crater.

“The climbers should have had permits from the appropriate authority to enter the Mount Sinabung area,” Jhonson said. “This is for safety and security.”

At 2,600 meters, Sinabung is the tallest peak in North Sumatra, followed by Mount Sibayak, at 2,040 meters. Both are active volcanoes.

Mount Sinabung last erupted in 2010 after a long centuries of calm. It’s last reported eruption was in 1600.



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