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Indonesia Volcano Eruptions Force Thousands to Evacuate, Airlines Cancel Flights

Indonesia Volcano Eruptions

Renewed eruptions from Indonesia’s Mount Ruang have prompted fresh evacuation orders, forced flight cancellations, and led to airport closures as the volcano spews smoke, lava, and volcanic gases. The erupting volcano has posed significant risks to both local residents and air traffic in the surrounding region.

Here are some details according to the report of CNN International

Mount Ruang’s Recent Activity

Mount Ruang, a 725-meter (2,400-foot) stratovolcano located on Ruang Island, North Sulawesi, has erupted multiple times since mid-April. Its latest eruptions occurred on Tuesday, sending lava and ash clouds into the sky. The volcanic activity has led Indonesia’s national volcanology agency, PVMBG, to issue its highest alert level, warning that a tsunami could be triggered by volcanic material collapsing into the ocean.

Ruang’s eruptions have impacted nearby Tagulandang Island, where authorities have called for the evacuation of over 12,000 people. Footage from Indonesia’s National Disaster Management Authority (BNPB) showed large crowds at evacuation points and towering ash plumes over the area.

Impact on Air Travel and Local Communities

The volcano’s activity has forced closures of at least seven airports, including Sam Ratulangi International Airport in Manado, North Sulawesi’s capital and a popular scuba diving destination. As a result, several airlines, including Air Asia and Malaysia Airlines, canceled flights to and from affected destinations.

Regional carrier Air Asia announced it canceled 21 flights following the eruptions and advised passengers to check their email and phones for updates on flight changes. Similarly, Malaysia Airlines issued travel advisories for flights in the region.

Nearby schools were also closed to protect children from volcanic ash, and residents were advised to wear protective masks to minimize health risks. The BNPB released dramatic footage showing ash cascading into the air.

Continued Monitoring and Precautions

The Malaysian meteorological department reported that volcanic ash from Ruang had reached eastern Malaysian airspace. Officials said they are monitoring the situation closely to issue necessary aviation weather warnings.

Indonesia, located on the Ring of Fire, is home to more than 120 active volcanoes. Mount Ruang’s recent eruptions highlight the ongoing risks posed by the country’s seismic activity. In addition to the most recent eruption, the volcano disrupted over 200 flights in mid-April and led to the evacuation of hundreds of people due to fears of a potential tsunami caused by partial collapse into the sea, reminiscent of an event in 1871.

Read Also: Vigilance as Indonesia Braces for Further Eruptions at Remote Volcano

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