Thousands Flee Homes as Volcanic Activity of Mt Sinabung Increases

MEDAN ~

As many as 10,714 people left their homes due to the increasing volcanic activity of Mount Sinabung, according to the National Agency of Disaster Mitigation (BNPB).

Spokesperson for the BNPB Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said over the phone from Jakarta on Tuesday that the number residents who fled their homes around the 2,460-meter active volcano had risen significantly, with 7,549 people having left on Monday night.

Nugroho added that they were evacuated from the six villages of Jaraya, Kutatengah, Sigarang Garang, Madingding, Kutagugung and Kutarayat by joint personnel of the Karo Regional Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD), the Indonesian Military, police and volunteers. They were then taken to ten camps.

The special taskforce set up to mitigate effects of Mount Sinabung’s eruption continued to assist people in meeting their basic needs, such as education for children in the refugee camps, who will be shuttled to their schools by trucks of the Karo Military.

However, Nugroho noted that the refugees were in urgent need of some logistics like food, clean water, toiletries, blankets and infant formula.

Volcanic activity of Mount Sinabung has been worsening, with the mount spewing ash clouds continuously since the alert status was raised on June 2 at 11 p.m. local time.

With the rising volcanic activity, the area to be cleared was also widened to 7 kilometers southeast and south of Mount Sinabung’s crater.

Filed under: The Nation

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