Categories: Featured News
Tags: Volcano

Indonesian volcano eruption prompts evacuations and airport closure

Share this content


Authorities respond to volcano eruption in Indonesia

Indonesia’s Ruang volcano has erupted, leading to the closure of a provincial airport and the evacuation of hundreds from nearby areas.

The volcano, located on a remote island in North Sulawesi, began emitting large quantities of lava, rocks, and ash several days ago.

Officials have raised the alert to the highest level due to the ongoing activity.

The eruption, which started on Wednesday, has produced a striking visual spectacle, with a fiery-red column of material reaching up to three kilometres into the sky.

Social media videos captured purple flashes of lightning above the volcano, adding to the dramatic scene.

Evacuation and impact on local communities

More than 800 residents have been moved to safety as the evacuation zone was expanded following the increased volcanic activity.

Heruningtyas Desi Purnamasari, an official at the volcanology agency, emphasized the ongoing risk: “The potential for further eruption is still high, so we need to remain alert.”

The agency also reported damage to homes and a hospital due to falling rocks and ash, prompting further evacuations.

Transportation has been significantly affected. The Manado airport in the provincial capital was closed to protect against the volcanic ash, which poses a risk to aircraft.

Additionally, Air Asia cancelled numerous flights in East Malaysia and Brunei after aviation authorities issued a safety warning.

Potential tsunami risk and historical context

The situation is further complicated by the potential for a tsunami if parts of the mountain collapse into the sea, a scenario reminiscent of a tragic event in 1871 when a similar eruption caused a tsunami that killed about 400 people.

Abdul Muhari, a spokesperson for the disaster mitigation agency, highlighted the urgent need for further evacuations, stating that around 1,500 people in high-risk areas need immediate relocation, with nearly 12,000 more potentially affected.

IFSJ Comment

The response to the eruption of Ruang volcano is a critical reminder of the unpredictable nature of volcanic activity and the need for prompt and effective disaster management strategies.

The extensive evacuations and airport closures reflect a well-coordinated effort to safeguard human lives and minimise economic disruption.

This event highlights the importance of continuous monitoring and readiness to act in regions prone to natural disasters.

Receive the latest breaking news straight to your inbox