March 1, 2012: Mount Marapi in Indonesia’s West Sumatra briefly erupts: Mount Marapi (Merapi), a volcano located in the Indonesian province of West Sumatra, briefly erupted early Wednesday morning, officials said. It comes after activity was also reported at the volcano in August 2011 (pictured below).
The 2,891-meter (9,485 feet) tall volcano, which is located near the cities and town of Bukittinggi, Padang Panjang and Batusangkar in West Sumatra, began erupting at around 7:30 a.m. local time on Wednesday, according to the Antara news agency.
A USGS graphic of the Major Volcanoes of Indonesia shows Mount Merapi in the lower left about 300 miles SWW of Jakarta Indonesia:
Marapi’s initial eruption lasted around fifteen minutes and spewed out volcanic ashes which reached some 200 meters (656 feet) to the south from its crater. A second eruption took place moments later, lasting about ten minutes and bringing thick white smoke about 100 meters (328 feet) up.
The USGS “Ring of Fire” map below, shows the Java (Sunda) Trench in the lower left (blue line). This was the site of the catastrophic December 26, 2004 mega-quake and tsunami that killed over 230,000. The earthquake was later found to have ruptured the fault for over 600 miles. A National Geographic special I recently watched disclosed an oddity about that mega-quake, in that when the subduction zone ruptured; a pie shaped slice was thrust upward of the coast of Java, creating a local tsunami over 115 feet high. Such are the freakish occurrences of nature.
Suparmo of the Volcanological and Geological Disaster Mitigation Center (PVMBG) in Bukittinggi told the Antara news agency that Mount Marapi will remain at a Level II alert status as it is still prone to eruptions and other kinds of activity. In addition, he called on locals to remain alert.
Since August 2011, Mount Marapi, the most active volcano on the island of Sumatra, has shown increased volcanic activity. The PVMBG has installed seismometers and digital analogs at an altitude of 2,000 meters (6.560 feet) at Nagari Batu Palano and at an altitude of 1,500 meters (4,920 feet) at Nagari Lasi in order to monitor the activity.
This USGS graphic reflects the different types of faulting and the mechanisms involved in creating and maintaining the worlds volcanoes.
Dozens of active volcanoes in Indonesia are part of the Pacific Ring of Fire, known for frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.
One of Indonesia’s most active volcanoes is Mount Merapi, which is located on the island of Java near Jogjakarta, the country’s second-most visited area after Bali. Last year, more than 300 people were killed in a series of eruptions between October and November which also displaced over 300,000 people. (Credits: Picture – USGS and BNO News, and Narrative – BNO News and W.G. Foster).
The Master of Disaster