Jakarta, Feb 1: Eight people were killed and three others injured after being hit by hot ash spewed by Mount Sinabung volcano in North Sumatra on Saturday, an official said
Powerful bursts of hot ash and volcanic material from the crater of Mount Sinabung volcano were seen again on Saturday, a day after nearly 14,000 evacuees returned home, Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, spokesman for the national disaster agency, told Xinhua on the phone.
“Officials are now overseeing and preventing those from returning to the zone,” Sutopo had said earlier in the day, referring to many villagers who had earlier returned to their homes.
The 2,475-metre-high Mount Sinabung erupted three times during the day, spewing columns of ash about two km into the air and spreading hot rocks and ash over a 4.5-km radius, said the spokesman.
Indonesia is enduring one of the longest series of volcano eruptions in more than 30 years with the authorities forced to deal with a rising number of refugees in North Sumatra. More than 31,000 people have been displaced, according to the agency.
Mount Sinabung has rumbled to life since last September after remaining quiet for 400 years. It has erupted on and off since then but the frequency of eruptions increased in November and December last year.