Friday, February 3, 2012

Indonesian government raises alert on Semeru Mount in East Java

The Indonesian Volcanology Center has raised the alert from level II to Level III on Semeru Mt in Lumajang, East Java on Friday, February 3rd, 2012 following increase of lava flow and pyroclastic flow observed over the past two days. According to information released by the center, pyroclastic flow observed 00.34 local time on Thursday which extends to the area 300 meters from the Jongring Seloko crater, SE of the volcano. It was followed by another pyroclastic flow at 07.47 on Thursday reached 2.5 km from the crater, lava flow also observed near the crater rim area and reach as far as 750 meters from the crater rim. A 4 km exclusion zone has been placed on the SE slopes of the volcano where pyroclastic flows occur. Climbers are advised to remain at least 1 km from Jonggring Seloko crater.

As for info, the Center has set four levels increasing intensity of volcanic activity with level I for the lowest and level IV for the highest.

The 3,676-metre (12,060-ft) Semeru is one of the most active volcanoes on Java Island. Geographically, it’s located at the position of 8° 06’ 30’’ Latitude and 112° 55’ Longitude. Its highest point is called Mahameru (+ 3676 meter) which is the highest peak on Java. The last eruptions phase activity were observed at the volcano on 9,14, and 17 June 2011. Activity resumed at the end of December 2011. Between 29th December 2011 and 15th January 2012 there were eight explosions at Jonggring Seloko crater, sending ash up to 600 m high. The nearest major city to Semeru is Surabaya. The area is also popular with hikers and nearby Mount Bromo is a well known tourist site.

Hot-line Information: Geological Hazard andVolcanology center of Indonesia (Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi) phone number: +62-22-7272606

Figure caption: Semeru mountain (the tallest volcano on the background) during its quiescence period with the Bromo-Tengger caldera at the foreground, at Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park. (Photo courtesy of: Gayatri Indah Marliyani, captured at 5.42AM, January 8, 2006)