Indonesia's Mount Tangkuban Perahu volcano erupts as tourists flee 600-foot ash cloud

An Indonesian volcano popular with tourists erupted Friday, forcing visitors to flee the area. 

The volcano, Mount Tangkuban Parahu, was seen spewing ash more than 600 feet into the air, according to the Jakarta Post. Videos of the eruption showed visitors running away from the toxic clouds. 

Indonesia's National Disaster Mitigation Agency said the area has been closed to tourists so officials can further evaluate the situation.

FROM THE SCENE: See videos of the tourists fleeing the eruption

Indonesia's Mount Tangkuban Parahu volcano erupts
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Indonesia's Mount Tangkuban Parahu volcano erupts
Ash rains down
Popular with tourists, Mount Tangkuban Perahu near Bandung has erupted.
Some frightening pics coming from Mount Tangkuban Perahu eruption. Tourists can hike or drive to the rim of this vo…
Volcanic eruption near Bandung, Java, Indonesia. Locals seem calm. Ash is fine and quite cool. No immediate reports…
UPDATE: Local police chief says at least 2 people taken to hospital suffering breathing difficulties, and evacuatio…
Drove past the entrance to this volcano this week. All was quiet but decided not to climb. Hope everyone is ok

Mount Tangkuban Parahu is located just 18 miles north of the city of Bandung, which is the country's third-largest metropolitan area. Indonesia, which is part of the Ring of Fire, is home to a total of 129 volcanoes

At least two people suffering breathing difficulties were taken to the hospital, police told 9 News. There were fewer than 100 people visiting the site at the time of the eruption, so authorities were able to evacuate everyone quickly. 

Clouds of ash were high enough that authorities issued a flight alert for the surrounding area, according to the Straits Times

Volcanoes have caused major tragedies in Indonesia. In 2010, the highly active Mount Merapi erupted and killed 275 people, forcing more than 75,000 people to evacuate the area

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