By Mikey Jones
Jobs do not get too much more dangerous than pulling sulphur straight out of an active volcano – and the workers risk their lives for just £4 a day.
Photographer Troyce Hoffman, 30, accidentally stumbled upon a sulphur mine on Kawah Ijen, Java, Indonesia when checking out the active volcano.
Troyce from northern California took the shocking photos after being recommended a visit to the volcano during his long trip through Asia.
Troyce said: “At the eastern end of the island of Java lies the active volcano of Kawah Ijen. Here men work in perilous conditions to mine sulphur from the bottom of the caldera.
“Ceramic pipes funnel the sulphur until it condenses and solidifies into pools that can be broken up.
“The miners carry these loads of solidified sulfur, weighing up to 90kg up and out of the crater on a steep loose three mile trail to the weigh station.
“Most workers develop respiratory problems from the noxious gases and disfigure their bodies from the heavy loads. All this for five dollars a day, ten if they can take two trips.
“I was checking out the various volcanoes on the island of Java and was talking to an Indonesian man at a bus station and he told me about the volcano of Kawah Ijen.
“He mentioned that is was very active with a bright blue acidic lake in the caldera, he never mentioned the active sulfur mine in the caldera.
“When I arrived I saw all the activity at the mine I tried to document this heartbreaking but fascinating way of life over the few days I was there.
“They work here under these conditions because it is a fairly high paying job compared to the surrounding area and most were trying to provide a better future for their families.”