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7-miles high plume of ash from Russia’s Shiveluch volcano poses threat to aviation

There are over 150 volcanos on the Kamchatka peninsula in Russia’s Far East, and up to 30 of them are active
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© Volcanology and Seismology Institute of Russia's Far-Eastern branch of the Academy of Sciences

PETROPAVLOVSK-KAMCHATSKY, July 08. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia’s active volcano Shiveluch, located on the Kamchatka peninsula in the country’s Far East, spewed a series of ash emissions to a height ranging between five and 11 kilometers (3-7 miles), but the eruptions pose no threat to nearby residential areas, local volcanic research group reported on Tuesday.

However, the Kamchatka Volcanic Response Team (KVERT) warned air traffic control services of the danger, which volcano poses to aircraft issuing the “Orange” code of warning for the aviation. The service advised airlines to alter their scheduled flight routes saying ash particles are capable of choking aircraft’s engines.

The Aviation Color Codes reflect four levels of danger posed for civilian aircraft overflying areas adjacent to volcanoes and range from ‘Green’ to ‘Red’ codes. According to the International Airways Volcano Watch system (IAVW) the ‘Orange’ code stands for “Volcano is exhibiting heightened unrest with increased likelihood of eruption” or “Volcanic eruption is underway with no or minor ash emission.”

The cloud of ash, which the 3,283-meter (10,771 feet) Shiveluch churned out as a result of three emissions over the past 24 hours, has extended to the length of 100 kilometers (62) miles and moves in the southeastern direction towards the Pacific Ocean.

Local Emergencies Ministry’s department warned tourism companies operating in the region against holding tours in areas located near the volcano.

There are over 150 volcanos on the Kamchatka peninsula in Russia’s Far East, and up to 30 of them are active.

The Shiveluch is located some 450 kilometers (280) miles to the northeast of the Kamchatka Peninsula’s largest city of Petropavlovsk-Kamchhatsky with the population of over 181,600. However, nearest residential areas are located within the distance of 50 kilometers 931 miles) from the Shiveluch, which had been regularly spewing out ash since 1980s.

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