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Sumatra volcano eruption: Journalist, students found among the dead

Rescue team members ride a truck passing through a road covered by ash during rescue operations to search for victims after the Mount Sinabung eruption
Rescue team members ride a truck passing through a road covered by ash during rescue operations to search for victims after the Mount Sinabung eruption
Photo by Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images

Mount Sinabung, a volcano in western Sumatra, spewed its biggest eruption in recent months Saturday, killing at least 16 people. Another charred corpse was located on Sunday, and a rescued college student died in the hospital. The Indonesian volcano had been rumbling with steam, ash, and small eruptions for four months, reports the Christian Science Monitor on Monday, Feb. 3.

Authorities had evacuated the area, moving some 30,000 people into emergency shelters in tents and public buildings, but the people involved, many of whom had farm and livestock to care for, needed to go home. So on Friday, the National Disaster Mitigation Agency allowed almost half of the local residents to go home.

The next day disaster struck, with huge blasts and thundering eruptions and thick coats of hpt, suffocating volcanic ash. Rescue efforts found fourteen bodies at first, including a teacher And four high school students who had come to the area to see the eruptions up closer. Other victims included a television journalist.

The Sumatra volcanic eruption is part of an ongoing world-wide situation. It has erupted sporadically since last September. The Indonesian mountain belongs to the arc of active volcanoes called the “Ring of Fire,” which includes Mt. St. Helens and other volcanoes on the west coast of the United States.