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Volcano Triggers Tsunami In Indonesia, Kills 62

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| December 23 , 2018 , 11:53 IST

Destructive tidal waves apparently caused by volcanic eruption hit the coast around Indonesia's Sunda Strait late on Saturday.

Officials reported, approximately 62 people lost their lives and more than 600 people got injured on the Indonesian islands of Java and Sumatra following an underwater landslide caused by the eruption of Krakatau on Sunday.

The waves were so huge and disastrous that it created a wall of water some 65 feet (20 meters) inland, damaging hundreds of houses including homes and other buildings, the witnesses said.

Authorities warned residents and tourists in coastal areas around the Sunda Strait to stay away from beaches and a high-tide warning remained in place through till Dec. 25.

"Please do not be around the beaches around the Sunda Strait. Those who have evacuated, please do not return yet," said Rahmat Triyono, an official at the Meteorology, Climatology and Geophysics Agency (BMKG).

The TV footage showed roads blocked by debris from damaged houses, overturned cars and fallen trees. The water washed away many outdoor shops and vendors.

The tsunami was caused by "an undersea landslide resulting from volcanic activity on Anak Krakatau" and was exacerbated by abnormally high tide because of the full moon, disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said to media.

Indonesia, one of the most disaster-prone nations on earth, where tectonic plates collide and a large portion of the world's volcanic eruptions and earthquakes occur.

ALSO READ: Death Toll From Indonesia Earthquake And Tsunami Reaches 1,234, Another 799 Injured

In 2004 a tsunami triggered by a magnitude 9.3 undersea earthquake off the coast of Sumatra in western Indonesia killed 220,000 people in countries around the Indian Ocean, including 168,000 in Indonesia.

A few months back, successive earthquakes flattened parts of the tourist island of Lombok, and a double quake-and-tsunami killed thousands on Sulawesi island in Indonesia.

Nearly 200 people died when a Lion Air passenger plane crashed into the Java Sea in October.