Talk:2010 eruptions of Mount Merapi

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Too Long ?[edit]

Just my thought, it seems like the article is too long now. How about cutting and removing too detailed information ? For example in Chronology parts. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Awewe (talkcontribs) 20:49, 10 November 2010 (UTC)

Seconded. Could someone with the time do it? With the Christmas season I am a little too busy. Crisco_1492 (talk) 05:17, 23 December 2010 (UTC)

Death toll[edit]

The report from Associated Press (ABC) does not seem particularly accurate. It reports 18 dead on the first day of the eruption, 26 October 2010, including a two month old baby. Firstly, we already know that the first day of the eruption was not 26 October 2010. Other press reports indicate the baby was three months old and that up to 20 were injured (not dead). Should this section be moved to the Talk page until corroboration can be obtained from an independent source? Skinsmoke (talk) 23:50, 26 October 2010 (UTC)

Death tolls and such things are always conflicting as they outdate quickly and it sounds like such a minor discrepancy i am not gonna loose sleep The Resident Anthropologist (talk) 23:54, 26 October 2010 (UTC)
The 18 dead were detailed in a seperate report, a later report (unsurprisingly) revised that upward to 25. I have updated to the 25 report with an appropriate cite.
The report of 20 injured was cited to an AP report (and I think an AP reporter) who witnessed 20 injured (not dead) people being evacuated. No doubt that was only at the one location and there would hve been others. It was described in the article at the time as a "media workers" eye witness report.
The dead baby was reported separately as 2 mths and also 3 mths. I wrote up those edits originally and as there was a small conflict I cited both articles. I think they were to skynews 2mth and to Jakarta Post 3mth. At the time I went with the information from the article that seemed to be more credible, I think from memory it was the Jakarta Post article.
The main article and content on this eruptive article have been edited back to the original which was : eruption on 25oct, with the 3 times of eruption given. Then on 26 oct eruption in the evening following official observers reporting the (sounds of) the morning landslide form 2 different vantage points. The reports of lava in the river on the weekend were added and cited today (weds 27 oct) as well.Felix 05:51, 27 October 2010 (UTC)
From an earlier edit (A three-month-old baby died on the way to hospital on 26 October after experiencing respiratory problems arising from the eruptions that day[1][2])Felix 06:17, 27 October 2010 (UTC)
There is a press article quoting Dr. Teguh Dwi Santosa at Yogyas main hospital now saying 30 dead have been taken to the hospital.
27 Oct 2010, MOUNT MERAPI, Indonesia (AP) — Rescuers scoured the slopes of Indonesia's most volatile volcano for survivors Wednesday after it was rocked by an eruption which killed at least 30 people.
Dr. Teguh Dwi Santosa, a doctor at a local hospital, said the death toll climbed to 30 on Wednesday and 17 had been hospitalized, mostly with burns, respiratory problems and other injuries.[3]Felix 21:24, 27 October 2010 (UTC)

Is this article a good idea[edit]

As the event is unfolding on an hourly and daily basis I think we can expect a lot of people to look at the main article. We can also expect some out of WP Guideline edits to be turning up there during this period.

I am concerned that keeping 2 articles in line and accurate is possibly a bit unnecessary. Once this eruptive period settles down then we can tidy up, render all the information down to a basic historical record in that article and move on as normal.

  • 1. I think this eruptive article creates an unnecessary adjunct to the main article which can easily accommodate a transient current activity section
  • 2. The information is in context there on the main article and the reader can readily browse information on other aspects of Merapi whilst looking at the current eruptive activity section
  • 3. If we have 2 articles running things are going to start conflicting with one article giving different info to the other as was occurring just recently. Due to edits on main article edits introducing corruption to the time line, especially in regard to casualties the 2 different articles were telling a different story.

I propose this article is re-merged back into the main article and try and just manage the one article well rather than 2 different ones. Felix 05:42, 27 October 2010 (UTC)

The split was nessecary as it took up nearly half the Original article thus required to either be trimmed down there. The Resident Anthropologist (talk) 16:35, 27 October 2010 (UTC)


this article is just pasted with a bunch of ritual updates and is not encycloapaedic. it sould be reorganised and sectioned, perhaps take other eruptions as a guide (the iceland one was good (article that is))(Lihaas (talk) 12:29, 27 October 2010 (UTC)).

I agree, It need reorganization and right now is not in the best it could be. The Resident Anthropologist (talk) 16:35, 27 October 2010 (UTC)

Keep updated?[edit]

From the little information available theres been another eruption killing a dozen or so people on the 4th of Nov (I think) and its not even mentioned here? Not blaming wikipedians but I'm surprised by the lack of exposure this gets - if it were somewhere in the "western world" we'd be getting bombarded by updates. Surely this should be on the front page of wikipedia in the current events section? djambalawa (talk) 05:37, 5 November 2010 (UTC)

I have updated the article with the eruption on Friday the 5th of November (58 deaths making 113 dead?). I will try to find out out any eruptions missed, as the figures don't add up properly. You can edit it yourself too you know! - 220.101 talk\Contribs 13:30, 5 November 2010 (UTC)

What is defined as an "eruption" ?[edit]

"Lava from Mount Merapi in Central Java, Indonesia began flowing down the Gendol River on 23 October 2010, signalling the likelihood of an imminent eruption"

This seems like a quite drivellsome statement to me. If lava is seen flowing down a river, surely this means that an eruption is already in progress. It does not "signal" that one is "likely" to be "imminent". Or does there have to be something more spectacular than lava flowing down a river, to instantiate an eruption ?

Eregli bob has a good point here but I think the statement is referring to an imminent explosive eruption.
As it turns out the lava in the Gendol River did signal an imminent eruption, as subsequently there was one, on 26 oct. However maybe the lead sentence is a bit too journalistic in style and should be expressed in a more encyclopaedic or prosaic tone. At the moment this article and the main Merapi article are both in flux due to the nature of the eruptive situation at the site. When the eruption calms down and hopefully ceases then the article will of course need a major review.
There is a lot of information available on the eruptions but it requires a considerable effort to sort through it all and pick out what is just old news late to press and jumbled up together with new events. In some cases the information is quite erroneous. Sometimes, especially western media sources get the days events reported mixed up with other days. The western media is often way off mark and provides quite a lot of confusing information further muddying the information pool.
The Indonesian government volcanology site was down when the eruptions started and when they finally got it up only 3-4 days ago they took down all the older information making it hard to cross reference news reports with their own 'official' information, much of which was posted a day or so post event anyway. Sadly it was not there long enough to get google cached and is currently missing. I regret not making a pdf copy of it at the time. I have emailed them and asked for a copy however I would not expect to hear from them as no doubt they are rather busy there. Same with the Indonesian government disaster management site, it is a bit late to publish at times. With several other eruptions going on in Indonesia, plus the floods landslides, and the tsunami it is hardly surprising that information is late in being posted.
Adding to the problem is that much of the more authoritative information is (unsurprisingly) published in the Indonesian language. This requires careful interpretation and the Indonesian journalists get it wrong sometimes. WP editors have made some mistakes as well in this regard making the the checking and cross matching of information essential.
Eregli bob if you want to contribute then get on the case, if you think the contributions other editors are making to this article is "drivel" then come up with something more succinct and authoritative. Some effort has been made to put authoritative information into this and other Merapi associated articles and filter out nonsense but assistance is always more useful than criticism. I think I may have even written that intro line myself, I don't recall now as there have been far too many edits over the last couple of weeks to recall this one. If you think it is "drivel' then so be it, however please understand there has been quite a volume of information to process on this article and several linked to it and not a lot of time to go back over it to polish it up. Indeed due to the nature of the changing events sometimes any edit is reviewed by later information in such a short period of time that it renders putting a lot of work into the prose a little redundant. The comment was cited to Mount Merapi’s Swelling Signals Huge Eruption, Scientists Warn Candra Malik of the Jakarta Globe and published on October 24, 2010. The report dealt with speculation toward an imminent eruption and discussed the lave dome bulge, lave spurts, distension of the mountain’s slopes and other considerations.
Pre-eruption of 26 Oct some were speculating the lava flow signalled a release from the lava dome and hence a release of built up pressure...and hence a lessening of the chance of an explosive eruptive event. Others speculated it merely indicated the build up of pressure was rupturing the lava dome and that signalled an imminent explosive eruption. Indeed both cases were put forward by volcanologists and geologists prior to the 26 oct event at Merapi. Then it explosively erupted somewhat adding qualification to the view that it did not signal a release of pressure and lessen the likelihood of an (explosive) eruptive event. Rather. it now seemed in hindsight the lava flowing in the Gendol River may have indeed signalled the imminent eruption of Merapi on 26 oct. If you can improve on it and want to rewrite it go ahead. BTY Eregli bob don't forget to sign your posts so it is clear who you are. Felix 08:57, 7 November 2010 (UTC)
I have altered the lead sentence a little, particularly to include 2010 eruption of Mount Merapi as it seems standard practice. Re. above comments, there are more than one type of eruption defined (see Types of volcanic eruptions), some volcanoes go boom (Plinian eruption?) think Mt. St Helens. Some like in Hawaii sort of go 'burp' or maybe puke is more correct, as they just spew up lava. (see Hawaiian eruption) - 220.101 talk\Contribs 15:35, 7 November 2010 (UTC)

Original research or guess?[edit]

This text about Borobudur ", which is roughly 30km to the west of Merapi" was added without any source by an editor with a total of 36 edits since 2006 [1]. AGF, but without some support I think this should be removed. - 220.101 talk\Contribs 17:28, 8 November 2010 (UTC)

They are pretty close, using the coords from their pages on WP gives 27.59 km link JMiall 18:47, 8 November 2010 (UTC)
I have been looking around for a cite as I think I can recall seeing an article with some similar text in it. I might be imagining things by now though. I think I can remember doing a {{convert]] on the distance and queried it as I had recently measured that distance at ~27.76 km on a bearing of 285.57 degrees west/southwest. I used the google earth measuring tool and fixed the measuring points at the summit of Merapi and the center of Borobudur. Is this the "vacumn cleaner" guy? That had me chuckling for a while earlier. It is in the Borobudur article as well. Antara discusses it on 6 nov- This refers to the ash being "acidic". "The volcanic ash had acid properties that might mold and stale the stones of which the temple was made. Therefore, the ash had to be cleaned up immediately, he said" . The tribun news article refers to 1-2 cm and the destruction of vegetation in the park area.Felix (talk) 18:52, 8 November 2010 (UTC)
This sounds distinctly like Original Research which is Verboten!, >;-( but I don't know how strict that is in things like distance. I certainly don't think we need, or can, go to 0.01 km which is 10 metres and unlikely to be that accurate anyway! "About 28 km" is easily near enough! I dont know where the text that Borobudur was to be closed for a week came from as the source explicity states 5-9th November, which Is what I changed the dates to. As for vacuum cleaners,(!) "Not supported by the sources given!" - 220.101 talk\Contribs 21:00, 8 November 2010 (UTC)
I think the edit was maybe just a bit muddled. There were earlier reports of it being closed for a week (from around 29-30 Oct, but of course that week had now passed with time. Maybe the editor was reading those or just speculating. If the detail is to remain then the Antara article should be cited as it is at least authoritative. We should stay with those dates edited by 220.101 talk\Contribs as they are verifiable and change as more information evolves. My opinion is that there will be pressure to re-open the Borobudur site but the task of cleaning it will overwhelm those doing it, especially if the ash keeps on coming. I read some articles on the 8 nov discussing the efffects on Yogya and people were starting to raise issues like that. I read elsewhere that the site was open on Monday but visitors were not allowed to climb upon it, only view from a stand-off distance. So site open and temple structure open is a potential source of ambiguity. Frankly I miss the reference to the vacuum cleaners being used. I was LOL for a few minutes imagining the scene and the tangled electrical cables. Improbable but good satire. I edited the distance last night rounding it to 27.75km peak to peak. Maybe that is a bit close to own research, I am not sure. At least it is better than "roughly 30 kms". Personally I am not sure on WP policy on this, seems simple enough to apply a measure to a map and very hard to find a citable source. Accuracy would still be questionable especially if it were a none 'cartographic' source. If anyone wants to change the distance to "approximately 28 kms" then I would support it, otherwise the 27.75 km I put in last nioght seems OK as it was measured of a readily accessible sat image and easily verified. It is good that people are worrying about this sort of detail. It seems like nit picking but it is important especially as WP information tends to be propagated so quickly into other websites and the news media occasionally lift out bits of it and use it creating a potential circular paradigm of information and sourcing, 220.101 talk\Contribs is quite right to be concerned about this edit. Felix (talk) 05:43, 9 November 2010 (UTC)
Depends on what they mean by vacuum cleaners, ;) (The Flinstones used Mammoths if I recall rightly!) Or maybe they have petrol powered vaccies? According to the Antara ref you put in the 'temple' was "closed for tourists" again on Friday morning (10 AM local), which I have added. Agree about the ambiguity! Borobudur site/ temple complex/ temple could well mean 3 different things!
Indeed your figures are better than before, assuming the geo-coords are correct, it is verifiable! I have also rounded the distance to 28 km and adjusted the convert to 0 decimal points. - 220.101 talk\Contribs 09:53, 9 November 2010 (UTC)
I have a quiet fear someone will turn up with one of those leaf blowers and start moving the dust around. I have seen then doing battle in the streets of Pondok Indah in Jakarta. Good outcome on that edit I think. Better keep an eye on the version sitting on the Borobudur article. BTY, I agree on the rounding to 28km. Bit hard to tell where the peak of Merapi might be these days anyhow and I doubt anyone is going to go up there to check. Felix (talk) 13:34, 9 November 2010 (UTC)


I have uploaded one picture of the post-eruption destruction. How many images do we need? I have some of the ash in the city of Yogyakarta, some of the destruction in Cangkringan village, and some of the landslides that resulted from the mudflows in Turgo village. All can be made available, under the Gnu free documentation license. Crisco 1492 (talk) 11:36, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

Good addition. Felix (talk) 11:24, 4 January 2011 (UTC)
Thanks. I will try and upload a few more, but sadly I don't have any pictures of the eruption itself. Crisco 1492 (talk) 01:30, 5 January 2011 (UTC)

Aftermath and Lahars[edit]

According to this [2] 1000 homes were destroyed in march 2011 - with 5600 in makeshift shelters from the volcano +3400 from lahars = 9000 - seems there should be a section on that somewhere, should it be here as an 'aftermath' section ? EdwardLane (talk) 14:34, 8 June 2011 (UTC)

The Civil impacts section would appear to be an appropriate venue. -- Felix (talk) 16:45, 16 June 2011 (UTC)