Indonesia Issues Warning to Avoid Coast Near Anak Krakatau
The fatal tsunami that hit Indonesia on Saturday, caused by a chunk of the Anak Krakatau volcano slipping into the ocean, killed more than 400 people and damaged many buildings.
On Wednesday, Indonesian authorities warned of “extreme weather and high waves” around the erupting Anak Krakatau volcano. A warning issued on the anniversary of the disastrous Asian earthquake and tsunami in 2004, people have been asked to avoid the coast.
Anak Krakatau had been emitting lava for months, prior to the collapse of its south-west side – a 64-hectare section – causing the catastrophic waves.
“This caused an underwater landslide and eventually caused the tsunami,” said Dwikorita Karnawati, head of the meteorological agency.
Late Tuesday, the Meteorology, Geophysics and Climatology Agency of Indonesia asked people to stay 500 meters to 1 kilometer away from the coastline along the strait. Karnawati said Anak Krakatau is being monitored for further signs of eruptions and high waves, along with heavy rainfall on Wednesday.
“We have developed a monitoring system focused specifically on the volcanic tremors at Anak Krakatau so that we can issue early warnings,” Karnawati said. “All these conditions could potentially cause landslides at the cliffs of the crater into the sea, and we fear that that could trigger a tsunami,”she added.
The confirmed death toll is of 429, with more than 1,400 people being injured. At least 154 people are still missing and thousands have moved to higher ground.
One of the biggest volcanic blasts recorded in the history was when the Krakatoa volcano erupted in 1833, killing more than 36,000 people and lowering the global surface temperature by one degree Celsius. Anak Krakatau (child of Krakatoa) emerged from that area in 1927.
Saturday’s tsunami evoked memories of the disaster that shook Indonesia in December 2004 – when an earthquake triggered the Indian Ocean – killing 226,000 people in a dozen countries, including more than 120,000 in Indonesia.
The devastation was huge and it was the worst witnessed disaster in the recent times. However, the victims from the latest tsunami said they have hopes that they can rebuild their homes and lives just like the people after 2004 tsunami did.
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