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Huge 20,000ft ash cloud spewing from volcano prompts red eruption warning

NewsHuge 20,000ft ash cloud spewing from volcano prompts red eruption warning

The eruption of a volcano in a chain of islands off the coast of Alaska has intensified, with a plume of ash rising 20,000 feet above sea level, expers have warned.

The ash cloud was observed starting at 7.00 am local time drifting south-south-east, a statement by Alaska Volcano Observatory said.

It added: “Cloud height is undertermined at this time and could be more than 20,000 ft above sea level (6 km).

“In response, the aviation Color Code is being raised to RED and the Volcano Alert Level is being raised to WARNING. The National Weather Service has issued a SIGMET for this activity.

The statement continued: “Eruptive activity began increasing overnight starting around 1am local time with increased lava eruption from or within the summit crater but no significant ash emissions.

“Activity was detected on regional infrasound arrays, increasing seismic tremor, and elevated surface temperatures in satellite data. Overnight webcam images confirmed glowing from the summit with only minor ash emission.”

Eruptions from Shishaldin have produced minor and on occasion significant ash clouds in the past, AVO said.

It added: “These can occur with little warning. Shishaldin is monitored by local seismic and infrasound sensors, web cameras, and a telemetered geodetic network.

“The local monitoring network is partially impaired, therefore AVO is also using nearby geophysical networks, satellite data and regional infrasound and lighting data to detect activity. AVO will continue to closely monitor unrest at Shishaldin Volcano.”

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