Krakatoa volcano
(Photo : From Wikimedia Commons)

The notorious Krakatoa volcano has erupted off the coast of Indonesia twice on Friday, spewing plumes of ash 500 meters into the air.

The two eruptions were documented at the country's volcanology center on Friday night between 9:58 P.M. and 10:35 P.M. in Jakarta local time. Residents about 93 miles away claimed they heard 'loud rumbles' soon after the eruptions.

Many locals took it to social media to express their worries about the thunderous booms they heard from the eruption. One person from Indonesia even tweeted, 'We are fighting coronavirus. Please, go to sleep.'

The Center for Volcanology and Geological Disaster Mitigation's (PVMBG) magma volcanic activity report recorded the first eruption lasting one minute and 12 seconds when it spewed out ash and smoke 200 meters high. Furthermore, the second eruption started at 10:35 P.M. and lasted for 38 minutes and 4 seconds. The second eruption spewed out a 500-meter-high column of ash that blew to the north.

Three more volcanoes also displayed elevated activity on Friday. Mount Kerinci in West Sumatra, Mount Semeru in East Java and Mount Merapi in Central Java, all erupted the same day as Mount Krakatoa.

The National Disaster Mitigation Agency's head of data added that PVMBG monitoring presents that the eruption at Krakatoa continued until Saturday morning at 5:44 in Western Indonesian Time. A level two alert status remained in place, being the second-highest on a scale of four. It is considered to be the strongest volcanic activity in Indonesia to date since an eruption in December 2018. There were no casualties reported from the eruption.

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The 1883 Eruption of Krakatoa

Mount Krakatoa, 'Anak Krakatau' in Indonesian, is a volcano that emerged from the remains of the biggest volcano blast recorded by the Krakatau volcano in 1883. It killed more than 36,000 people and completely changed global weather and temperatures for the years that followed.

Almost 300 villages and towns were wiped out by the eruption, together with the disastrous tsunami it generated. Its explosive force was said to be 13,000 times more potent than the atomic bomb that annihilated Hiroshima in Japan in 1945.

The eruption in 1883 was so disastrous that people from 4,800 to 1,000 kilometers away from Mauritius and Perth in Western Australia, claimed to have heard the booms from the explosion.

Indonesia Still Fighting Coronavirus

Indonesia is the world's fourth most populous country. Despite this fact, it was slow to carry out coronavirus tests, having conducted only a few hundred earlier this month. While most of the neighboring countries in South-east Asia started detecting cases throughout February, Indonesia stayed behind and only started noticing cases early in March. They were also slow even to stop direct flights from Wuhan, China to the popular getaway destination, Bali.

According to an article by The Conversation, Indonesia was in denial over coronavirus. Terawan Agus Putranto, the country's Health Minister argued weeks ago that it was 'insulting' to point out that effort to detect cases was not being implemented since the country had not yet recorded a single case 'all because of prayer.' Other government officials also attributed the country's subtropical climate as the cause for the lack of coronavirus cases.

The events that happened during the following weeks caused the Indonesian government to turn a different page. President Joko Widodo admitted last month that the government had filtered information about the spread of the virus, as they did not want to cause unrest to the society.

The country has now closed its borders and is getting proposals ready to allow regional governments to impose lockdowns, something the public has been demanding for quite some time now. Indonesia now has 3,842 confirmed coronavirus cases and a total of 327 deaths.

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