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Klyuchevskoi volcano spews ash to height of 5,3 km

October 09, 2013, 14:59 UTC+3

It is snowing in the volcano area and its monitoring is difficult because of poor visibility

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Photo ITAR-TASS/Igor Buymistrov

Photo ITAR-TASS/Igor Buymistrov

PETROPAVLOVSK-KAMCHATSKY, October 9 (Itar-Tass) -The Kluchevskoi volcano in Kamchatka has spewed ash to a height of 5.3 kilometers above sea level, the Kamchatka branch of the Geophysical Service of the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) told Itar-Tass on Wednesday, referring to data from the Kamchatka Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT).

The volcanic outburst was recorded at 15:18, local time (03:18 GMT) Wednesday. The ash plume from the eruption has spread 60 kilometers southeast of the volcano, a representative of the RAS Geophysical Service said, adding that these are satellite observation data. The eruption is not seen from the Klyuchi settlement (about 30 km from the volcano). “It is snowing in the volcano area and its monitoring is difficult because of poor visibility,” said the RAS Geophysical Service representative.

There have been no reports so far about the volcanic dust fall in the settlements in the vicinity of Klyuchevskoi. There is no danger to the local population, experts say. However, according to KVERT classification, the “orange” aviation color code has been assigned to the volcano. It warns about the possible ash eruption to a height of 8 kilometers and the hazard it may pose to aircraft. All the concerned services have been warned.

The Klyuchevskoi volcano is the highest active volcano in Eurasia (4,750 meters above sea level) and one of the most active volcanoes in the world, according to experts of the Institute of Volcanology and Seismology. Its eruptions usually occur once in every 5 - 6 years and are accompanied by hot lava flows from the crater and powerful ash outbursts. The previous eruption of this volcano was observed from September 2009 to December 2010. The current eruption began in August 2013 and is accompanied by all the usual phenomena for this giant mount’s activity - lava flows, ejection of incandescent matter from the crater.

Scientists have recorded a sharp intensification of the volcano’s activity over the last few days. It manifested itself in the growing amplitude of volcanic tremor, which, according to recent reports, has already exceeded 60 mcm/s. Seismic activity on the Klyuchevskoi volcano has recently been so high as to render impossible correct seismic monitoring of the neighboring Bezymyanny and Plosky Tolbachik volcanoes, seismologists say.

Klyuchevskoi is located 360 kilometers northeast of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. It is under continuous monitoring of experts. The volcano poses no danger to nearby populated localities. 

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