The mount might spew volcanic ash and lava from its peak."
Jember (ANTARA News) - Mount Raung in East Java is closed for climbers due to increasing volcanic activity, according to the Volcanology and Geology Disaster Mitigation Center (PVMBG).

Head of the Volcano Observation and Investigation Division of the PVMBG Gede Swastika said here on Thursday that no climbing was allowed as the volcanos status was raised to alert level III.

"Volcanic tremors have continued to increase, with an average amplitude of 21 millimeters. The mount might spew volcanic ash and lava from its peak," Swastika added.

Therefore, following the declaration of alert level III status, the PVMBG set an exclusion zone of three kilometers around the volcanos peak.

Moreover, Head of the Regional Prevention and Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD) of Jember Mahmud Rizal stated that the authority had communicated with residents of 14 villages located on the mounts slopes.

The villages are spread across three sub-districts, Sumberjambe, Silo and Ledokombo, which are at high risk of being affected by the volcanic eruption.

"Today, the BPBD of East Java held a coordination meeting with the three regional BPBDs of Jember, Bondowoso and Banyuwangi to discuss the increasing activity of Mount Raung," Rizal noted

In the last two weeks, the PVMBG has been monitoring the seismic activities of the volcano, which is 3,332 meters above sea level and is located at the border of Jember, Bondowoso, and Banyuwangi districts.

Mount Raung is one of the active volcanoes in Java Island.

It has a 2-kilometer wide caldera surrounded by a grayish rim. The difference in color of the rim and the flanks of the volcano is caused by the rims lack of vegetation as compared to the healthy and extensive vegetation on the flanks.

The PVMBG increased the status of Mount Raung from Waspada (alert level II) to Siaga (alert level III) on Monday (June 29).

(Reporting by Zumrotun Solichah/Uu.A059/INE/KR-BSR/A/H-YH)

Editor: Priyambodo RH
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