Alaska on Alert as Volcano Eruption Intensifies

Pavlof spewing plenty of ash but flights not in danger
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 4, 2014 12:39 AM CDT
Alaska Issues Alert as Eruption Intensifies
The Pavlof volcano erupts as seen from the air near Cold Bay, Alaska.   (AP Photo/Alaskan Volcano Observatory, Theo Chesley)

Alaska issued its highest volcano alert since 2009 yesterday as an ongoing eruption at Mount Pavlof intensified, sending ash up to 24,000 feet into the air. The red alert for the volcano in an uninhabited area around 600 miles southwest of Anchorage was later lowered to orange, but the Alaska Volcano Observatory warns that conditions could change rapidly, KTUU reports. The volcano—which erupted last year—has been spewing ash and lava off and on for years and its latest eruption began last Friday.

Authorities say the eruption could continue for months but air traffic in the region has not been disrupted thanks to weather conditions that make it easy for flights to bypass the affected area. "Right now, with the weather clear, it's just putting on a good show," an observatory research geologist tells Reuters. "We're getting a lot of pilot reports and a lot of good photos, so we're able to keep a good eye on it." (More Alaska stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.