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Eurasia’s highest volcano erupts in Kamchatka for second time in year

September 11, 2015, 6:53 UTC+3 PETROPAVLOVSK-KAMCHATSKY
At any moment the Klyuchevskoy can spew ash at the height of more than 6,000 meters above the sea level
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Klyuchevskoy volcano

Klyuchevskoy volcano

© ITAR-TASS/Alexander Petrov, archive

PETROPAVLOVSK-KAMCHATSKY, September 11. /TASS/. Eurasia’s largest volcano, the Klyuchevskoy, located on Russia's far eastern Kamchatka peninsula, has erupted for the second time this year, said Olga Girina, chief of the Kamchatka Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT) of the Institute of Volcanology and Seismology.

"The first data about the start of a new eruption of the Klyuchevskoy volcano appeared on August 27," Girina told TASS, adding that moderate strombolian activity had been observed in the crater before the volcano was obscured by clouds.

"The lava flow in the crater continues. Seismic activity and thermal anomaly are being registered. It indicates that the Klyuchevskoy’s eruption is underway," she said.

A yellow air traffic safety warning has been declared in the Kamchatka region due to the volcano’s increased activity. It means that at any moment, the Klyuchevskoy can spew ash at the height of more than 6,000 meters above the sea level. Because of the potential hazard posed to flight operations, airline companies have been advised to change their routes for the time of the volcano’s eruption.

The volcanic activity is being constantly monitored through video cameras, satellites and seismic stations. According to volcanologists, it is too early to say now how powerful the current eruption will be.

The Klyuchevskoy, also known as the Klyuchevskaya Sopka, is located 360 kilometres to the northwest of the capital of the Kamchatka territory, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. The nearest township, Klyuchi is separated from it by a distance of 30 km and it is home to about 5,000 people at present.

The volcano, which is believed to be about 7,000 years old, has the height of 4,750 meters above the sea level. Apart from being the largest active volcano in Eurasia, it is also the highest mountain in Russia outside the Caucasus.

All in all, the Kamchatka peninsula has 29 active volcanoes.

The previous eruption of the Klyuchevskoy started in January and ended in March. The volcano belched out ash to the elevation of 6.0 to 6.5 km above the sea level almost daily. The lava descended 500 meters down the slope in the direction of the Apakhonchich field camp of the Institute of Volcanology and Seismology.

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