Indonesia’s Sinabung volcano erupted on August 2, 2017, ejecting a plume of ash and smoke up to 5.4 km (18 000 feet) above sea level.


Indonesia’s Sinabung volcano erupted at 01:10 UTC (08:10 local time) on August 2, 2017, ejecting a plume of ash and smoke up to 5.4 km (18 000 feet) above sea level. It was one of Sinabung’s biggest eruptions in the past several months. By 05:10 UTC, there were at least 19 reported eruptions, up from about 2 to 8 per day. The Aviation Color Code is Orange. There were no reports of casualties.

The eruptions produced a large pyroclastic flow at 03:04 UTC (08:04 local time). The flow tumbled down the east and southeast slopes as far as 4.5 km (2.8 miles), reaching the Labortus River and creating a natural dam on its upper reaches.

By 03:30 UTC, volcanic ash cloud was reaching a height of 5.4 km (18 000 feet) above sea level, according to the Darwin VAAC. 

According to local media reports, students from an elementary school in Kuta Rakyat were sent home because volcanic ash covering the village was considered dangerous. 

National Disaster Mitigation Agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said, as reported by the AFP, thousands of people in 10 villages were directly affected by ash fall. He warned villagers to stay out of a danger zone that extends as far as 7 km (4.4 miles) from the peak.

Nugroho said villagers urgently need face masks and clean water and called on people to be vigilant about the possibility of flash floods and lava flows because the eruption created a natural dam on the Laborus River.


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