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Kamchatka volcano spews ash to altitude of 7 km

June 28, 2013, 9:16 UTC+3
Russian Academy of Sciences' Geophysical Service claims there is no danger for the local population
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Photo ITAR-TASS

Photo ITAR-TASS

PETROPAVLOVSK-KAMCHATSKY, June 28 (Itar-Tass) - The Shiveluch volcano in Russia's Far Eastern Kamchatka Peninsula has once again spewed ash to an altitude of seven kilometers above sea level, a source from the Kamchatka branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences' Geophysical Service told Itar-Tass on Friday. There is no danger for the local population.

The giant mount ejected ash at 05:06 local time (21:06 on Thursday, Moscow time). This activity was accompanied by a quake that continued for about six minutes. The ash spew was not seen as the volcano is covered with clouds. No volcanic ash fallouts were reported in the nearby settlements as of yet, the source said.

Increased activity was registered at the Shiveluch volcano early on Thursday. The giant ejected a column of ash to an altitude of kilometers above sea level. A plume of ash moved in the south-western direction. The settlements of Klyuchi (situated 50 kilometers away from the volcano) and Lazo (156 kilometers off the volcano’s foot) were covered with a one-millimeter layer of ash. Local residents were advised not to leave their homes and use gauze dressing when going out.

Experts believe the ejection came as a result of an explosion and caving in of part of a lava dome in the active zone of Shivclush. It is difficult at the moment to assess the scope of the damage, as it occurred in that part of the volcano that cannot be seen from local settlements, specialists say. According to them, the peak of the activity is over, but ejections of volcanic ash may continue.

Shiveluch is the northernmost active volcano on the Kamchatka Peninsula. It is located 450 kilometers northeast of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. The absolute height of the volcano is 3,283 meters. The highest point of its active part, called Young Shiveluch, is 2,500 meters above sea level, the diameter of the crater is 1.5 kilometers. Catastrophic eruptions took place in 1864 and 1964, when a large part of the lava dome collapsed and created a devastating debris avalanche. Young Shiveluch has been active since September 1980. Specialists have been continuously monitoring the volcano for more than 30 years. So far the volcano poses no threat to neighboring populated localities.

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