New Delhi, Dec 4: In a shocking incident, the lifeless bodies of eleven trekkers were discovered near the crater of Indonesia’s Mount Marapi following a volcanic eruption over the weekend. The eruption, which occurred on Sunday, forcefully propelled ash into the air, reaching altitudes of at least 3 kilometres.
Rescue operations on Monday, led by Abdul Malik, head of the Padang Search and Rescue Agency, resulted in the retrieval of three survivors, though they were found in weakened conditions and bore burns.
Unfortunately, the search for the 12 missing individuals has been suspended due to a renewed eruption, highlighting the challenging conditions on the mountain.
At the time of the eruption, a total of 75 hikers were in the vicinity, with the majority successfully evacuating to safety. Authorities declared the second-highest alert level, imposing a strict prohibition on residents approaching within 3 kilometres of the crater. Video footage capturing the eruption showcased a massive plume of volcanic ash engulfing the sky, with roads and vehicles left covered in ash. In the aftermath, forty-nine climbers, many of whom sustained burns, were evacuated on Monday.
Jodi Haryawan, spokesperson for the local search and rescue team, emphasized the inherent danger in continuing search operations amid ongoing volcanic eruptions.
Mount Marapi, standing at 2,891 meters on Indonesia’s westernmost Sumatra island, is among the 127 active volcanoes in the archipelago, exemplifying the seismic and volcanic activity characteristic of the Pacific Ring of Fire, where continental plates converge, defining Indonesia’s geographical landscape.