Residents evacuate to Jembrana following rise in Mt Agungs status

Negara, Bali (ANTARA News) - Evacuees of the Karangasem district community, Bali Province, have reached Jembrana District following an increase in volcanic activity at Mount Agung.

Indonesias Volcanology and Geological Disaster Mitigation Center raised the danger status of Mount Agung in Bali to the highest level four, starting from 8:30 p.m. local time on Friday.

The institution has appealed to tourists and residents to avoid any activity near the crater of Mount Agung and all northward, northeastward, southeastward, and south-southwestward areas within a 12-kilometer radius of its peak, increasing the area from six kilometers announced earlier.

"Considering Mt. Agungs latest development marked by a higher level of fire and extraordinary increase in tremors, we have decided to upgrade its status from Alert Level III to Watch or Level IV," Kasbani, head of the office of the ministry of energy and mineral resources, said on Friday.

Based on information collected from the Jembrana Police, Saturday, as many as 91 residents from several villages in Karangasem District chose to evacuate to their relatives houses in the villages of Pekutatan, Gumbrih, Asah Duren, Pengeragoan and Manggissari in Jembrana District.

"We continue to monitor the progress, including the influx of refugees into Jembrana District. Coordination with the related institutions is also being carried out, including for readying logistics and refugee camps," Head of Operations of Jembrana Police Commissioner M. Didik Wiratmoko stated on Saturday.

He said that of the total count, 43 people had evacuated to Pengeragoan Village, seven each to the villages of Pekutatan and Gumbrih, 25 to Asah Duren Village, and nine to Manggissari Village, some of whom are children and toddlers.

Head of Pekutatan Sub-district I Komang Dhiyatmika said the refugees began arriving on Friday night, most of whom had families in the villages.

Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, head of the data and information center and public relations of the National Disaster Mitigation Agency, said the agencys head and other concerned officials had already visited Bali to coordinate with the governor and district heads.

"A national command center will soon be activated to accompany the regional governments. Logistic aid supplies and equipment will soon be taken to the evacuation centers. Coordination meetings between the concerned ministries and other offices will immediately be held," he noted on Friday.

Source: ANTARA News

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