Cars and motorists covered by thick volcanic ash from the erupting Mount Sinabung in North Sumatra on Sunday afternoon. (Antara Photo/Tibta Peranginangin)

Farmers Face Harvest Failure After Mount Sinabung Erupts


JUNE 10, 2019

Jakarta. Farmers in three sub-districts on the slope of Mount Sinabung in Karo, North Sumatra, are facing harvest failure following a major eruption on Sunday afternoon, an official said on Monday.

The volcano spewed columns of ash seven kilometers into the sky above its crater on Sunday afternoon. The ash spread up to 3.5 kilometers southeast of the crater and 3 kilometers to the south, the National Disaster Mitigation Agency said on Sunday.

Tremors recorded by seismograph lasted for 9 minutes and 17 seconds. There was no casualty.

"More than 70 percent of farms in Namanteran, Payung and Kutabuluh were damaged by the volcanic ash," Martin Sitepu, the head of Karo's disaster mitigation agency, said.

Authorities are collecting more data on agricultural damage caused by Sunday's eruption since the volcanic ash had also reached other villages, Martin said.

Karo is one of the top producers of vegetables and fruits in Indonesia. It produces more carrots and corns than any other region in the country.  

The volcano was calmer on Monday. Smoke billowed only 500 meters above its crater.

More than 3,000 families have been relocated from the slope of Mount Sinabung since 2015. The volcano erupted for the first time after a 400-year-long hiatus in 2010. It has been continuously active since then.