Thousands flee as Jakarta volcano erupts spewing ash and smoke into sky

A volcano has erupted in East Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia, bringing 2,700 residents to safety.

The volcano is currently spewing ash and smoke as high as four kilometers into the sky, the country’s disaster relief agency said.

The erupting volcano has also been called Mt. Ile Lewotolok and is located about 2,600 kilometers from Jakarta, Indonesia’s capital.

Raditya Jati, a spokesman for the agency, said in a statement that this had caused panic among local residents.

About 2,780 people from 26 villages in the surrounding areas have sought refuge and no casualties have been reported so far, Jati said.

Eyewitness Muhammad Ilham, 17, told Reuters that local residents “were in a panic and that they are still looking for a place to stay and need money right now”.

On its website, the Indonesian Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation Center said surrounding areas were likely to experience “hot clouds, lava flow, lava avalanche and toxic gas”.

Thousands flee as Jakarta volcano erupts spewing ash and smoke into sky

Kasbani, the center’s head, told Reuters the volcano’s status has been raised to the second-highest level in Indonesia’s quadruple alert system due to “increasing threats.”

It has been reported that there are three more volcanoes that have reached this level, the agency said.

These include the Merapi volcano in Java island and Sinabung in Sumatra, which erupted this month.

Although Indonesia has nearly 130 active volcanoes, more than any other country.

Many of these can show a high level of activity, it can take weeks or months to show any activity.