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Arresting Photos of Indonesia's Erupting Mount Sinabung

Indonesia's Mount Sinabung has been erupting since September, covering surrounding villages in ash and wreaking havoc on the lives of those nearby.

Most recently, volcanic ash damaged evacuated homes in North Sumatra, causing many to collapse. Students in the provincial capital of Medan reported respiratory problems. This comes just after the 8,530-foot high mountain erupted over 200 times in one week. It has also triggered nearly 10,000 small hybrid quakes since first erupting last fall.

Government officials have asked all residents living near Mount Sinaburg to wear masks as a precaution because, as one official told the Jakarta Postshifts in wind direction made it challenging to predict where exactly volcanic ash will land.

As of last weekend, more than 25,000 people from 32 different villages have taken refuge in government shelters. According to a Jakarta Post report, 14 people have died, mostly from illness related to living in the temporary shelters for long periods of time. Sinabung Disaster Mitigation representative Jhonson Tarigan tells the Times, "we are starting to see a medicine shortage, as well as food. We hope to receive more donations.”

Below, the most recent scenes from North Sumatra ash-covered villages:


A man looks at Mount Sinabung spewing ash from Jraya village in Karo district, Indonesia's North Sumatra province, January 13, 2014. (REUTERS/Roni Bintang) 


Chickens are seen in the midst of plants covered by ash from Mount Sinabung, January 12, 2014. (REUTERS/Roni Bintang)


The window of a house is partially covered in ash spewed out of Mount Sinabung after it erupted at Bekerah village in Indonesia's North Sumatra province, January 11, 2014. (REUTERS/Beawiharta)


Villagers ride motorcycles as they evacuate after ash from Mount Sinabung hit their homes, January 12, 2014. (REUTERS/Roni Bintang)


A dog is seen at a chili plantation covered by ash from Mount Sinabung at Kebayakan village in Indonesia, January 13, 2014. (REUTERS/YT Haryono)


Coffee plants covered in ash spewed out of Mount Sinabung (background) after it erupted are seen at Kuta Rakyat village, January 11, 2014. (REUTERS/Beawiharta) 


A public bus travels between trees covered by ash from Mount Sinabung volcano at Tiga Pancur village in Karo district, Indonesia's North Sumatra province, early morning January 6, 2014. (REUTERS/YT Haryono) 


A villager carries her belongings during an evacuation after ash from Mount Sinabung volcano hit Payung village in Indonesia's North Sumatra province, January 8, 2014. (REUTERS/YT Haryono)


Students wearing masks stand in front of their classroom after Mount Sinabung erupted at Naman Teran village, January 11, 2014. (REUTERS/Beawiharta)


A child climbs onto a truck during an evacuation as ash from Mount Sinabung volcano hit Payung village in Indonesia's North Sumatra province, January 8, 2014. (REUTERS/Beawiharta)  


A mother holds her son as they watch the eruption of Mount Sinabung at Berastepu village in Karo district, Indonesia's North Sumatra province, January 10, 2014. (REUTERS/Beawiharta) 

Keywords: Indonesia, Volcano

Mark Byrnes is an associate editor at The Atlantic Cities. All posts »

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