Sunday, August 29, 2010
The Volcano that Slept for 400 years
The volcano has been showing signs of activity since Friday and it was at just about midnight that people first reported seeing a red glow at the crater and smoke rising high into the sky. They then reported hearing a large noise that sounded like an aircraft overhead. It turned out that this was in fact coming from the volcano.
The Sinabung volcano rises over 2,400 metres and shot its molten materials as high as 1500 metres into the air. All residents within a six kilometer danger zone around the volcano have been evacuated. The island's largest city Medan is 60 km North-East of the volcano. The Indonesian archipelago lies on the Pacific Ring of Fire and has an astonishing 129 active volcanoes at a mininmum.
Officials in Sumatra have stated the red alert will remain in place for at least a week as volcanologists monitor the situation. Authorities are now sending smoke masks and respiratory medicines to cope with the number of people effected by inhaling the volcanic materials. At least one person is known to have died from such complaints so far.