By Mac Slavo
Fears of an imminent eruption on the Indonesian tourist island of Bali have led to the evacuation of an estimated 50,000 people. The Mount Agung volcano is going to erupt, scientists say.
Waskita Sutadewa, the spokesman for the disaster mitigation agency in Bali, said people have scattered to all corners of the island and some have crossed to the neighboring island of Lombok. Indonesian authorities raised the volcano’s alert status to the highest level on Friday following a dramatic increase in seismic activity. It last erupted in 1963, killing about 1,100 people.
— Indonesian Red Cross (@palangmerah) September 25, 2017
Villagers are staying in temporary camps, sports centers, village halls, or with friends and relatives. Some do return to the exclusion zone during the day to tend to their livestock or shift the animals to areas further from the volcano for their safety. Others say they are selling their cows because they don’t know when they’ll be able to return.
“It’s obviously an awful thing. We want to be out of here just to be safe,” said an Australian woman at Bali’s airport who identified herself as Miriam. National Disaster Mitigation Agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said hundreds of thousands of face masks will be distributed in Bali as part of government humanitarian assistance that includes thousands of mattresses and blankets. Indonesia is prone to seismic upheaval due to its location on the Pacific “Ring of Fire,” an arc of volcanoes and fault lines encircling the Pacific Basin.
Government volcanologist Surono, who uses one name, said the feared eruption could be huge and potentially also close airports in East Java and Lombok, according to Click to see the original article