Deadly volcanic ash spewing out of Mount Sinabung. (Image: CNN)
People living near Mount Sinabung' in North Sumatera had a terrible surprise when the volcano erupted on Saturay at 4.48pm local time. The eruption released a blast of volcanic ash 3km into the sky, resulting in the deaths of seven people. BBC reported
that the victims had been farming in an unsafe area close to the mountain.
It is not expected for the volcanic ash to affect Malaysia, as the winds over the country are blowing from the northwest. According to Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Datuk Seri Madius Tangau, the wind direction could change to southwesterly. He stated that if the mountain continues to erupt, the volcanic ash could reach Peninsular Malaysia after May 25 or May 26.
The last time the volcano erupted was in 2014, and more than 20,000 villagers were displaced. Sinabung became active in 2010 after being dormant for hundreds of years, and is one of the 127 active volcanoes in Indonesia. Some locals still enter the zone, recurrently staying there to take care of their homes, property and farm.