Even though we are surrounded by the infamous Ring of Fire, Malaysia has always been in a safe zone, sheltered by the countries around us. Compared to our neighbours, we are less affected by earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes and other natural disasters.

But did you know we are less safe than we think? And the reason why is because we're actually located very close to Mount Toba, one of the potentially deadliest spots in the world.

Mount Toba, Asia's Supervolcano

Like Yellowstone in the United States, Mount Toba is among the world's very few supervolcanoes. The mount's crater, which over the years turned into a lake, is one of Indonesia's most popular tourist destinations, known as Lake Toba.

Located in the midst of mountain ranges in Sumatra, Toba last erupted 74,000 years ago.

It is believed that the volcanic gases of the eruption were ejected through both hemispheres of the earth, causing it to circulate across the globe.

It was discovered that Indonesia, Malaysia, and even India were blanketed in 5cm of Toba's volcanic ash during its massive eruption in the past. Traces of the ash were even found in Greenland.

The scientists who studied this massive eruption predicted it would have caused a volcanic winter for several years. They also theorised that the eruption could have been the reason for a population bottleneck that happened in the past.

Luckily for mankind, most of the ash fell into the sea. Toba's ash can be found in the South China Sea, Arabian Sea and even in Lake Malawi in Mozambique.

At the moment, the supervolcano is dormant. But according to a conference held several years back, a quake could reactivate the magma chamber located in the Sumatra fault line.

But if the supervolcano ever becomes active again, Malaysia would be directly in the firing line.

Source: BBC and TheJakartaPost