Search for survivors suspended as Mount Semuru spews more ash

The search for survivors has been suspended as Mount Semuru spews more ash today, December 6.

The fresh activity with the Indonesian volcano means that rescuers had to suspend the search for survivors.

A search for aerial images will show the level of devastation experienced this weekend. From looking at new images, you can understand why the search for survivors has been temporarily suspended. The images show streets covered in a blanket of volcanic ash. Homes and transportation have disappeared.

“All evacuation teams have been pulled out … temporarily because there was a small fresh eruption and it could endanger the evacuation teams,” rescue worker Rizal Purnama said. “The search for survivors will continue today once the situation is a bit safer.” “Dozens of people remain missing”, he added.

Whilst rescuers in hard harts tried to dig through the aftermath of the eruption in the search for survivors, more plumes of dense smoke emerged.

Their task was made more difficult as the volcanic debris had started to harden. “It’s very difficult … with simple tools,” Purnama said.

“The status of Mount Semeru is still at level 2, which means at this level people need to be more vigilant because the potential threat is still there,” he said.

In attempts to help those affected by the loss of property or who have been evacuated, public kitchens and health facilities have been organized to help the more than 1,000 people who have been displaced.

Indonesia’s geological agency reported, “ash from Semeru travelled up to 4km away after the Saturday eruption”.

According to CNN Indonesia, “A trauma healing team to work with children affected by the eruption has been dispatched, while hundreds of aid packages – including rice, blankets and clothes and other basic necessities – have been sent to the area”.

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