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16 May 2024, 11:21

Mount Ibu spews volcanic ash nearly five kilometers above peak: PVMBG

JAKARTA, 16 May (BelTA - ANTARA) - The Center for Volcanology and Geological Disaster Mitigation (PVMBG) recorded eruptive activity of volcanic ash soaring up to five kilometers above the peak of Mount Ibu on Halmahera Island, North Maluku.

The eruption occurred at 9:58 local time, with thick gray volcanic ash clouds heading into the northeast from the north.

"The seismograph recorded the eruption, with a maximum amplitude of 28 millimeters and a duration of 354 seconds," an officer from the Mount Ibu observation post, Richard Chaniago, stated in a report from his office on Thursday.

The PVMBG issued a Volcano Observation Notice for Aviation (VONA) warning with code red for the North Maluku area. The VONA warning aims to notify pilots, operators, air traffic managers, and meteorologists regarding the distribution of volcanic ash for aviation safety.

Mount Ibu is currently on alert status, or level III, since May 8, 2024. The PVMBG has increased the status of this strato-type volcano due to increased volcanic activity and seismicity.

According to Chaniago, within eight days of being at the alert activity level, Mount Ibu was recorded to have experienced three eruptions, with ash clouds reaching as high as five kilometers and one eruption, with an ash column reaching four kilometers.

The PVMBG recommends residents around Mount Ibu to not approach the mountain within a radius of three kilometers and a sectoral extension of five kilometers towards the crater opening in the northern part of the active crater.

If ash rain occurs, residents are advised to wear some form of protection for the nose, mouth, and eyes, he added.

Residents in the villages of Duono, Tukuoko, Goin, Togorebasu, Sangajinyeku, Toguis, Todoke, and Borona living more than four kilometers from the crater in the north must increase their vigilance while still complying with directions from the regional government.

Mount Ibu has a height of 1,325 meters above sea level, located in the northwest of Halmahera Island, North Maluku. The top of the mountain is a volcanic crater, with the center of the crater being one kilometer wide and 400 meters deep, while the outer part is 1.2 kilometers wide.
 
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