Mount Agung Volcano Poses No Threat to Tourist Visitors
Bali’s Mount Agung Entering Equilibrium Phase Reducing Threat of Major Eruption.
Bali Mount Agung Volcano remains at the second highest alert status of “siaga” with no significant signs of growing volcanic activity in recent weeks.
As reported by Beritabali.com, Indonesia’s Minister for Energy and Natural Resources (ESDM), Ignatius Jonan, visited the Mount Agung Observation Post located in the village Rendang in Karangasem Regency on Wednesday, December 26, 2018, in order to observe the work of volcano watchers firsthand and to inaugurate the recently renovated facility.
The Minister announced during his visit, “The status of Mount Agung remains at a level 3 alert and the danger zone remains unchanged.”
Minister Jonan emphasized that Bali remains very safe for tourist visitors. Meanwhile, the head of the ESDM Mitigation Team for the Eastern Region, Devy Kamil Syahabana, reports that the level of lava contained with the crater of Mount Agung is only one-third of the volcano’s total capacity and that the mountain’s volcanic activity has now entered a new phase of building equilibrium.
Syahbana told the press that the 7.0 scale earthquake that devastated parts of Lombok in early August and the large number of aftershocks that followed have, in fact, had a positive impact on Mount Agung current shift to equilibrium. Adding: “If we look at Gunung Agung’s activity in 1963, the new stability phase that followed was a gradual process. In 1963 (after the major eruption) it took up until one year for the mountain to achieve equilibrium.”
Monitoring equipment installed at the observation post still records deep volcanic earthquakes, shallow volcanic earthquakes, and distant tectonic events occurring on the average of once every six hours.
He said the last volcanic eruption took place on July 27, 2018. Magmatic intrusions to the surface of the crater still occur, while reminding his listeners that for actual eruptions to occurred an accumulation of gas is required. While gas was accumulating inside Mount Agung in preparation for a coming eruption, that eruption was averted when the massive Lombok earthquake in July and its aftershocks caused the accumulating gasses to escape into the atmosphere. The amount of magma in the crater remains relatively low, but remains subject to change at any time.
UPDATE: Early on the morning of Sunday, December 30, 2018, Mount Agung showed signs of more volcanic life erupting briefly for 3 minutes and 8 seconds at 4:09 am sending a thin cloud of volcanic dust some 700 meters above the crater and depositing a dusting of volcanic ash in the Karangsem Regency of Bali.
The Alert Status of “Siaga” for Mount Agung remains unchanged.