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Mount Semeru Eruption; Authority Warns of Cold Lava as Rainfall Still High

11 June 2024 07:24 WIB

TEMPO.CO, JakartaMount Semeru in East Java erupted again in the early hours of Monday, June 10, 2024, launching incandescent lava into Besuk Kobokan River in the southeast in Supit Urang Village, Lumajang Regency, at 00:42 a.m. local time. 

The Semeru Volcano Observation Post on Mount Sawur, Sumberwuluh Village, Candipuro District, Lumajang, recorded 28 instances of lava flows over six hours with heights ranging from 1 to 2.4 kilometers. 

"Hot clouds and lava avalanches are still occurring, but they are rarely observed visually due to foggy weather," said the Head of the Geological Agency, Muhammad Wafid, in a written statement, Monday afternoon.

Wafid said the eruption also resulted in cold lava as rainfall intensity was still high at Mount Semeru. Surrounding residents are asked to stay vigilant of deposits of lava materials and hot clouds along the rivers with headwater from the peaks of Mount Semeru. 

"The interaction between high-temperature material deposits and river water has the potential to cause secondary eruptions," he said.

Mount Semeru's volcanic activity is still intense

The number of recorded volcanic shocks shows that seismic activity on Mount Semeru is still high. Deep volcanic and harmonic quakes indicate the accumulation of materials beneath the surface of Mount Semeru. 

Previous results of deformation monitoring with Tiltmeter and GPS equipment showed no increase in pressure at Mount Semeru. However, in May 2024, magma was seen moving towards the surface. "This indicates an increase in pressure on the body of the volcano," said Wafid.

The Geological Agency still determined Mount Semeru’s volcanic activity at alert Level III. The Center for Volcanology and Geological Disaster Mitigation (PVMBG) asked locals and visitors to steer clear from the southeast sector of the mountain, especially the area under 13 kilometers from the top of the crater.

The public is also asked to avoid doing activities 500 meters from the banks of the Besuk Kobokan River due to the risk of hot clouds and lava expansion up to 17 kilometers from the peak. 

DAVID PRIYASIDARTA

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