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11 hikers killed after Mount Marapi volcano erupts in Indonesia, 3 found, many still missing

At least 11 hikers were killed after a volcano erupted in western Indonesia. With a peak elevation of 2,891 metres (9,484 feet) on the island of Sumatra, Mount Marapi erupted on Sunday, shooting a 3,000-meter-tall ash tower into the sky.

“There are 26 people who have not been evacuated, we have found 14 of them, three were found alive and 11 were found dead,” said Abdul Malik, head of Padang Search and Rescue Agency told AFP, speaking a day after the eruption.

Malik further added that there were a total of 75 hikers on the mountain from Saturday who rescue workers were trying to account for. Twelve were still missing and 49 had descended, some of whom had been taken to hospital, he said as quoted by AFP.

“Rescue teams were working through the night to help bring mountaineers down to safety,” West Sumatra’s natural resources conservation agency said as quoted by AFP.

Authorities have raised the alert to the second-highest level and prohibited residents from going within 3 km (1.86 miles) of the crater. Video footage showed a huge cloud of volcanic ash spread widely across the sky and cars and roads covered with ash.

A small eruption was taking place on Monday and the search was suspended, Jodi said.

“It’s too dangerous if we continue searching now,” he added.

There were 49 climbers evacuated from the area earlier Monday and many were being treated for burns, he said.

Indonesia sits on the Pacific’s so-called “Ring of Fire” and has 127 active volcanoes, according to the volcanology agency.

(With inputs from Reuters and AFP)

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Updated: 04 Dec 2023, 09:28 AM IST

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