Jakarta (Indonesia), December 18: The Indonesian authority has put Mt. Semeru on level three alert status, the second highest level, as it has shown heightening volcanic activities and spewed thick hot clouds and lava in the past 24 hours.
The head of the Geological Agency at the country's Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry, Eko Budi Lelono, said Friday that Mt. Semeru actively spewed hot clouds and its lava flow was still unstable. The volcano could strike at least up to the radius of two kilometers from its crater.
Another explosion is highly possible due to the high intensity of rainfall around the volcano, which might cause an increase in lava flow, Lelono said in a written statement.
The higher alert status of Mt. Semeru started on Thursday evening, hours after the volcano erupted again after Dec. 4 and spewed hot clouds several times.
Located in Lumajang district, East Java province, Mt. Semeru massively erupted on Dec. 4.
As of Dec. 15, the death toll has reached 48 people, according to data from the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB).
The BNPB has confirmed that search and rescue activities for victims are being on hold over the safety of rescuers and volunteers.