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A Volcanic Eruption, a Tsunami, Then Death

Death toll around Indonesia's Sunda Strait stands at 222
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 22, 2018 9:28 PM CST
Updated Dec 23, 2018 5:10 AM CST
This image made from video shows Anak Krakatau volcano erupting in Indonesia, Saturday, Dec. 22, 2018.   (TV ONE via AP)
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(Newser) – A tsunami apparently caused by the eruption of an island volcano killed at least 222 people around Indonesia's Sunda Strait on Saturday night, sending a wall of water crashing some 65 feet inland and sweeping away hundreds of houses including hotels, the government and witnesses said. Another 843 people are injured and 28 are missing, reports the AP. A rep for Indonesia's Meteorology and Geophysics agency says those numbers may still rise since not all affected areas have been reached. The Anak Krakatau volcano lies in the Sunda Strait between Java and Sumatra islands, linking the Indian Ocean and Java Sea. It erupted about 24 minutes before the tsunami, according to Indonesia's geophysics agency.

Scientists said Sunday that the tsunami could have been caused by undersea landslides or those occurring above sea level on the volcano's steep outside slope following the eruption. The worst affected area was the Pandeglang region of Banten province in Java, which encompasses the Ujung Kulon National Park and popular beaches, the disaster agency said. Alif, a resident in Pandeglang district who goes by one name, said the tsunami reached roughly 10 feet high. He told MetroTV station that many people were still searching for missing relatives. The 1,000-foot-high volcano, about 124 miles southwest of capital Jakarta, has been erupting since June. In July, authorities widened its no-go areas to 1.2 miles from the crater.

(Read more volcano stories.)

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