Kirishima volcano news & activity updates
Kirishima volcano (Kyushu, Japan): strong vulcanian explosion this morning
Thursday Apr 05, 2018 09:36 AM | BY: T
Eruption of Kirishima's Shinmoedake volcano this morning (image: MBC webcam)After a period of relative calm, a moderately powerful vulcanian explosion occurred from Shinmoedake's summit crater this morning at 03:42 local time.
It started with small ash emissions that lead to a sudden explosion producing an ash plume that rose several kilometers high. VAAC Tokyo estimated the height as approx. 13,000 ft (4.2 km) altitude, while the Japanese Meteorological Agency (who monitors the countries volcanoes, JMA) gives a much higher figure of 5 km above the summit (i.e. approx. 6.5 km altitude).
According to JMA a very small pyroclastic flow occurred from the center of the crater and traveled down the southeast side to a distance of approx. 800 m. Ballistic projectiles (lava bombs) landed in up to 1100 m distance.
This morning's eruption was the largest activity since another explosion on 25 March, and one of the biggest explosions since the start of the eruption on 6 March this year. According to local news, volcanologist seem to expect the eruption, characterized now by slow effusion of lava and intermittent small to larger explosions, to continue for months.
Video of the eruption:
Following the main explosion, the volcano continued to produce smaller ash plumes, but visibility decreased a lot later on.
JMA maintains alert level 3, which restricts access to most areas of the National Park and warns of potential hazards of bombs and pyroclastic flows in a radius of 3 km from the crater.
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