From Thursday, 21 October, the Alert level for Mt. Merapi in Central Java has been raised one level to just below the Red Alert due to mounting earthquakes to 39 times daily, up from 23 times a few days earlier. The volcano has also spewed more frequently volcanic material and magma, said Head for Research and Development in Vulcanology, Subandrio to Kompas daily. Scientists estimate that the magma has now reached about 1 km from the surface and could erupt any time. Therefore, climbers are now stopped from going up Mt. Merapi. The mountain is usually climbed by 10 to 15 persons daily.
Mt. Merapi, located in the heart of Central Java bordering Yogyakarta , has some of Indonesia’s most densely populated areas due to its frequent low-level eruptions that bring about the high fertility of the region. The local population is therefore very familiar with its frequent rumblings and casually go about their daily agricultural routine.