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Indonesia Struck by Tsunami And Volcanic Eruption

November 1, 2010

Indonesia was struck by two natural disasters during last week resulting in loss of more than 400 lives and large-scale displacement of people. On 25th October, a 7.7 scale earthquake triggered Tsunami in western parts of the country which resulted in loss of about 393 lives. Barely a day after, Mt Merapi, located in central Java, erupted multiple times and covered many neighboring villages in ashes. As of now about 33 people have been reported dead due to these eruptions. Many of the affected villages are in very remote areas and occurrence of these two events in quick succession has complicated the relief efforts. Tsunami warning system was put in place but it’s not clear why it couldn’t respond to the earthquake.

Officials say a multimillion-dollar tsunami warning system that uses buoys to detect sudden changes in water levels broke down a month ago because it was not being properly maintained. The system was installed after a monster 2004 quake and tsunami that killed 230,000 people in a dozen countries. A German official at the project disputed there was a breakdown, saying Monday’s 7.7-magnitude quake’s epicenter was too close to the Mentawai islands for residents to get the warning before the killer wave hit. “The early warning system worked very well — it can be verified,” said Joern Lauterjung, head of the German-Indonesia Tsunami Early Warning Project for the Potsdam-based GeoForschungs Zentrum. He added that only one sensor of 300 had not been working and said that had no effect on the system’s operation. [AP]

Image credit: 1) Mt Merapi on Aug 8,2010 | Flickr user Bernard Tey| Used under creative commons license

2) Evacuated villagers | Ifansasti/Getty Images

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1 Comment Leave a Comment

  • 1. Science Is Beautiful &raq&hellip  |  November 6, 2010 at 5:16 pm

    […] one of my previous post, I mentioned about twin disasters of earthquake/Tsunami and volcanic eruption which Indonesia has […]

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