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Smithsonian / USGS Weekly Volcanic Activity Report

You are currently viewing Archived reports for the week of 13 October-19 October 2004.


















 Activity for the week of 13 October-19 October 2004

The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report is a cooperative project between the Smithsonian's Global Volcanism Program and the US Geological Survey's Volcano Hazards Program. Updated by 2300 UTC every Wednesday, notices of volcanic activity posted on these pages are preliminary and subject to change as events are studied in more detail. This is not a comprehensive list of all of Earth's volcanoes erupting during the week, but rather a summary of activity at volcanoes that meet criteria discussed in detail in the "Criteria and Disclaimers" section. Carefully reviewed, detailed reports on various volcanoes are published monthly in the Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network.

Name Location Activity
Soputan Sulawesi (Indonesia) New
St. Helens United States New

Asamayama Honshu (Japan) Ongoing
Colima Mexico Ongoing
Fuego Guatemala Ongoing
Karymsky Eastern Kamchatka (Russia) Ongoing
Kilauea Hawaiian Islands (USA) Ongoing
Mauna Loa Hawaiian Islands (USA) Ongoing
Mayon Luzon (Philippines) Ongoing
Pacaya Guatemala Ongoing
Santa Maria Guatemala Ongoing
Sheveluch Central Kamchatka (Russia) Ongoing
Soufriere Hills Montserrat Ongoing
Spurr United States Ongoing
Tungurahua Ecuador Ongoing
Veniaminof United States Ongoing


New Activity / Unrest


Volcano index photo  Soputan  | Sulawesi (Indonesia)  | 1.112°N, 124.737°E  | Elevation 1785 m

According to DVGHM, volcanic tremor at Soputan began to increase to levels above normal on 18 October at 0930. In response, officials raised the Alert Level to Orange or 2 (on a scale of 1-4). Soputan erupted on 18 October at 1041, producing an E-drifting ash cloud to a height of ~600 m above the volcano's crater. At 1815 incandescence was visible reflecting 25-30 m above the crater's rim. Later that day, a "lava avalanche" traveled towards the S.

According to a news report, "ash and smoke" covered several parts of the nearby Minahasa regency and damaged hundreds of plantations along the mountain's slopes. Also, clouds of ash disrupted activities of residents in W Langowan district, where visibility fell to between 10 and 30 m. An official in the district said local homes were covered by up to 4 cm of ash. In the town of Palu, visibility decreased to 7 km. No evacuations were ordered.

Sources: Agence France-Presse (AFP), Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM), The Jakarta Post



Volcano index photo  St. Helens  | United States  | 46.2°N, 122.18°W  | Elevation 2549 m

During 13-18 October, seismicity was at low levels at St. Helens and growth of the new lava dome inside the volcano's crater continued. Gas-sensing flights on 13 October detected low levels of sulfur dioxide and hydrogen sulfide, but no carbon dioxide. Measurements of flow rate and temperatures in streams draining the crater showed no significant change from late September values. On 14 October, visual observations and thermal imaging of the crater showed enlargement of both the section of intense deformation and uplift on the S side of the 1980-86 lava dome, and the new lobe of lava in the W part of that area. Temperatures of almost 700 degrees C were measured in parts of the new lobe from which ash-rich jets rose tens of meters. Abundant steam continued to rise from the area of lava extrusion to the crater rim, where it dispersed southwestward in strong winds. On the 14th only sulfur-dioxide flux was detected, and there was no detectable carbon dioxide or hydrogen sulfide. Thermal imaging showed slow extrusion of lava continuing on the 14th. Global Positioning System (GPS) measurements on 15 October continued to indicate only minor deformation of the northern part of the 1980-86 dome and no deformation of the volcano's outer flanks. Parts of the area of uplift and new lava dome were higher than when previously seen on 14 October. On the evening of 16 October, rainfall triggered a small debris flow that traveled N from the crater and changed rapidly into a muddy stream flow within 5 km of the volcano. Through 18 October, the level and character of seismicity was consistent with a continuing rise of magma driving uplift of the crater floor and feeding the surface extrusion of lava. According to CVO, low rates of seismicity and gas emission suggested that the lava reaching the surface was gas poor.

CVO stated on 18 October that as long as this eruption is in progress, episodic changes in the level of activity can occur over days, weeks, or even months. Increase in the intensity of eruption could occur suddenly or with very little warning and may include explosive events that produce hazardous conditions within several kilometers of the volcano. Small lahars (volcanic debris flows) could suddenly descend the Toutle River valley if triggered by heavy rain or by interaction of hot rocks with snow or glacier ice. These lahars pose a negligible hazard below the Sediment Retention Structure (SRS), but could pose a hazard to people along the river channel upstream of the SRS. At this time of year, it is not unusual for rivers draining the volcano to contain high concentrations of sediment that turn the water murky. Although considered less likely at this time, the current eruptive activity could evolve into a more explosive phase that affects areas farther from the volcano and sends significant ash thousands of feet above the crater where it could be a hazard to aircraft and to downwind communities.

Source: US Geological Survey Cascades Volcano Observatory (CVO)



Ongoing Activity


Volcano index photo  Asamayama  | Honshu (Japan)  | 36.406°N, 138.523°E  | Elevation 2568 m

Based on information from JMA, the Tokyo VAAC reported that Asama erupted on 16 October at 1206, producing a SE-drifting ash cloud higher than 3.4 km a.s.l., and on 18 October at 1017, producing a N-drifting plume to a height of ~3.4 km a.s.l.

Source: Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Colima  | Mexico  | 19.514°N, 103.62°W  | Elevation 3850 m

During 13-19 October, block-lava flows continued to travel down Colima's N, W, NW, and S flanks as they have since 30 September. Several explosions occurred daily. By 16 October, the block-lava flows on the N flank reached at least 1,500 m long and about 150 m wide, and on the WNW flank block-lava reached at least 600 m long and 200 m wide at its widest point. During the report period, block-and-ash flows spilling from the fronts of the advancing block-lava flows on the W flank reached ~2 km from the summit. Sulfur-dioxide flux reached a maximum value of about 880 tons on 15 October.

Source: Centro Universitario de Estudios e Investigaciones de Vulcanologia - Universidad de Colima



Volcano index photo  Fuego  | Guatemala  | 14.473°N, 90.88°W  | Elevation 3763 m

During 14-18 October, several weak explosions at Fuego sent plumes to a maximum height of 800 m above the volcano and volcanic bombs were sometimes thrown 75-100 m above the volcano's crater. In addition, avalanches of incandescent volcanic material traveled towards the ravines of Taniluyá, Ceniza, and Trinidad on the volcano's flanks.

Source: Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia, e Hidrologia (INSIVUMEH)



Volcano index photo  Karymsky  | Eastern Kamchatka (Russia)  | 54.049°N, 159.443°E  | Elevation 1513 m

Seismic activity was above background levels at Karymsky during 8-15 October, with 310-540 shallow events occurring daily. Interpretations of seismic data suggested that weak ash-and-gas explosions occurred during the week. Ash-and-gas plumes may have reached heights of 2.5-3 km a.s.l. on 9, 12, and 13 October. Ash plumes were visible on satellite imagery on 11 and 12 October, extending E then ESE 80 and 50 km, respectively. Karymsky remained at Concern Color Orange.

Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)



Volcano index photo  Kilauea  | Hawaiian Islands (USA)  | 19.421°N, 155.287°W  | Elevation 1222 m

During 13-18 October, surface lava flows were visible on the PKK lava flow on the Pulama pali fault scarp and all vents in the crater of Pu`u `O`o were incandescent. Tremor remained at moderate levels at Pu`u `O`o and essentially no tremor was recorded at Kilauea's summit. A M 4.5 earthquake on 13 October at 1318 occurred about 6 km S of Pu`u `O`o at a depth of ~9 km. The earthquake permanently offset the Pu`u `O`o tiltmeter and several others on the volcano. During the report period, little deformation occurred.

Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)



Volcano index photo  Mauna Loa  | Hawaiian Islands (USA)  | 19.475°N, 155.608°W  | Elevation 4170 m

According to HVO, since early July 2004 an increased number of earthquakes had been recorded from beneath Mauna Loa. From week to week, the numbers fluctuated but remained well above the norm. During the week ending 13 October, 110 earthquakes were located under the summit, up from 47 for the week ending 6 October. Through 13 October, more than 730 earthquakes related to the ongoing seismic activity have been centered beneath Mauna Loa's summit caldera and the adjacent part of the southwest rift zone.

Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)



Volcano index photo  Mayon  | Luzon (Philippines)  | 13.257°N, 123.685°E  | Elevation 2462 m

According to a news report, seismicity increased at Mayon during 18-19 October. Based on information from PHIVOLCS, the article reported that seven low-frequency earthquakes and harmonic tremor were recorded in a 24-hour period.

Source: ABS-CBN News



Volcano index photo  Pacaya  | Guatemala  | 14.382°N, 90.601°W  | Elevation 2569 m

INSIVUMEH reported that activity at Pacaya during 14-18 October had not significantly changed in 2 months. Weak glow was visible from MacKenney cone, variable tremor was recorded, and white plumes rose to ~200 m above the crater.

Source: Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia, e Hidrologia (INSIVUMEH)



Volcano index photo  Santa Maria  | Guatemala  | 14.757°N, 91.552°W  | Elevation 3745 m

During 14-18 October, weak-to-moderate explosions at Santa María's Santiaguito lava-dome complex produced plumes to a height of ~9 km above the volcano. Small lahars traveled down San Isidro Ravine on 14 and 15 October. A small collapse of the SW edge of the lava dome in the crater of Caliente Dome produced a pyroclastic flow on 17 October at 0749. The pyroclastic flow traveled down the S flank and produced a steam-and-ash plume to a height of ~800 m above the surface upon contact with dammed water. INSIVUMEH reported that this collapse, like those that occurred on previous days and weeks, was associated with a new cycle of magmatic refeeding and a new lava flow towards the SW flank could be emitted in the next weeks or months.

Source: Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia, e Hidrologia (INSIVUMEH)



Volcano index photo  Sheveluch  | Central Kamchatka (Russia)  | 56.653°N, 161.36°E  | Elevation 3283 m

Seismicity was above background levels at Shiveluch during 8-15 October, with weak shallow earthquakes occurring beneath the active lava dome. Two relatively strong shallow earthquakes, M 1.75 and 2.1, were recorded on 8 and 11 October, respectively. Spasmodic tremor was recorded during 7-12 October. Based on interpretations of seismic data, weak ash-and-gas explosions and hot avalanches may have occurred all week. Visual observations from the town of Klyuchi revealed that ash plumes rose to 3.5 km a.s.l. on 7 and 12 October and extended more than 10 km E. Weak gas-and-steam activity occurred on 11 and 12 October. Clouds obscured the volcano at other times. Shiveluch remained at Concern Color Code Orange.

Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)



Volcano index photo  Soufriere Hills  | Montserrat  | 16.72°N, 62.18°W  | Elevation 915 m

Volcanic and seismic activity at Soufrière Hills remained at slightly elevated levels during 8-15 October, as they have since mid-September 2004. The seismic network recorded one rockfall and nine hybrid earthquakes. Sulfur-dioxide flux measurements were only possible on 2 days; 156 and 553 metric tons per day were recorded.

Source: Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO)



Volcano index photo  Spurr  | United States  | 61.299°N, 152.251°W  | Elevation 3374 m

Elevated levels of seismicity continued to be recorded at Spurr during 8-15 October. About 60 earthquakes were recorded within 30 km of the summit, with an average of about nine earthquakes per day. Spurr remained at Concern Color Code Yellow.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)



Volcano index photo  Tungurahua  | Ecuador  | 1.467°S, 78.442°W  | Elevation 5023 m

Volcanic and seismic activity at Tungurahua during 13-18 October were at relatively low levels, characterized by a few long-period earthquakes, tremor, and small explosions. Emissions mainly consisted of steam and gas.

Source: Instituto Geofísico-Escuela Politécnica Nacional (IG)



Volcano index photo  Veniaminof  | United States  | 56.17°N, 159.38°W  | Elevation 2507 m

Low-level tremor continued at Veniaminof during 8-15 October, correlating with weak steaming of the intracaldera cone as observed on the web camera. No ash emissions were observed, although cloudy conditions over the caldera restricted viewing for much of the week. Veniaminof remained at Concern Color Code Yellow.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)



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 News Feeds and Google Placemarks


The RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed is identical to the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report minus some features including the header information (latitude and longitude and summit elevation), the Geologic Summary, and a link to the volcano's page from the Global Volcanism Program. Each volcano report includes a link from the volcano's name back to the more complete information in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report on the Smithsonian website.




The CAP (Common Alerting Protocol) feeds are XML files specifically formatted for disaster management. They are similar in content to the RSS feed, but contain no active links.




A Google Earth network link for the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report can be loaded into the free Google Earth software, and in turn will load placemarks for volcanoes in the current weekly report. Placemark balloons include the volcano name, report date, report text, sources, and links back to the GVP volcano page for that volcano and to the complete Weekly Report for that week.

 Criteria & Disclaimers

Criteria

The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report does not necessarily include all volcanic activity that occurred on Earth during the week. More than a dozen volcanoes globally have displayed more-or-less continuous eruptive activity for decades or longer, and such routine activity is typically not reported here. Moreover, Earth's sea-floor volcanism is seldom reported even though in theory it represents the single most prolific source of erupted material. The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report summarizes volcanic activity that meets one or more of the following criteria:

- A volcano observatory raises or lowers the alert level at the volcano.
- A volcanic ash advisory has been released by a volcanic ash advisory center (VAAC) stating that an ash cloud has been produced from the volcano.
- A verifiable news report of new activity or a change in activity at the volcano has been issued.
- Observers have reported a significant change in volcanic activity. Such activity can include, but is not restricted to, pyroclastic flows, lahars, lava flows, dome collapse, or increased unrest.

Volcanoes are included in the "New Activity/Unrest" section of the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report if the activity occurs after at least 3 months of quiescence. Once a volcano is included in the "New Activity/Unrest" section, updates will remain in that section unless the activity continues for more than 1 month without escalating, after which time updates will be listed in the "Continuing Activity" section. Volcanoes are also included in the "New Activity/Unrest" section if the volcano is undergoing a period of relatively high unrest, or increasing unrest. This is commonly equal to Alert Level Orange on a scale of Green, Yellow, Orange, Red, where Red is the highest alert. Or alert level 3 on a scale of 1-4 or 1-5.

It is important to note that volcanic activity meeting one or more of these criteria may occur during the week, but may not be included in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report because we did not receive a report.


Disclaimers

1. The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report is intended to provide timely information about global volcanism on a weekly basis. Consequently, the report is generated rapidly by summarizing volcanic reports from various sources, with little time for fact checking. The accuracy of the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report is dependent upon the quality of the volcanic activity reports we receive. Reports published in the Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network are monthly, and more carefully reviewed, although all of the volcanoes discussed in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report are not necessarily reported in the Bulletin. Because of our emphasis on rapid reporting on the web we have avoided diacritical marks. Reports are updated on the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report web page as they are received, therefore information may be included regarding events that occurred before the current report period.

2. Rapidly developing events lead to coverage that is often fragmentary. Volcanoes, their eruptions, and their plumes and associated atmospheric effects are complex phenomena that may require months to years of data analysis in order to create a comprehensive summary and interpretation of events.

3. Preliminary accounts sometimes contain exaggerations and "false alarms," and accordingly, this report may include some events ultimately found to be erroneous or misleading.

4. Many news agencies do not archive the articles they post on the Internet, and therefore the links to some sources may not be active. To obtain information about the cited articles that are no longer available on the Internet contact the source.

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Information presented on this website is considered public information and may be distributed or copied. Use of appropriate byline/photo/image credit is requested. We strongly recommend that USGS data be acquired directly from a USGS server and not through other sources that may change the data in some way. While USGS makes every effort to provide accurate and complete information, various data such as names, telephone numbers, etc. may change prior to updating. USGS welcomes suggestions on how to improve our home page and correct errors. USGS provides no warranty, expressed or implied, as to the accuracy, reliability or completeness of furnished data.

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RSS and CAP Feeds

An RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed for the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report first made available on 5 March 2008 can be utilized with the aid of various free downloadable readers. The report content of the news feed is identical to the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report minus some features including the header information (latitude and longitude and summit elevation), the Geologic Summary, and a link to the volcano's page from the Global Volcanism Program. Each volcano report includes a link from the volcano's name back to the more complete information in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report on the Smithsonian website. On 12 March 2009, GeoRSS tags were added so that the latitude and longitude for each volcano could be included with the feed.

At the end of each individual report is a list of the sources used. We would like to emphasize that the World Organization of Volcano Observatories (WOVO) website (http://www.wovo.org/) lists the regional volcano observatories that have the most authoritative data for many of these events.

CAP (Common Alerting Protocol) feeds are XML files specifically formatted for disaster management.


Google Earth Placemarks

A Google Earth network link for the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report was first made available on 1 April 2009. This file can be loaded into the free Google Earth software, and in turn will load placemarks for volcanoes in the current weekly report. Placemark balloons include the volcano name, report date, report text, sources, and links back to the GVP volcano page for that volcano and to the complete Weekly Report for that week.

 Acronyms and Abbreviations

a.s.l. - above sea level

AVO - Alaska Volcano Observatory

AVHRR - Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer

CENAPRED - Centro Nacionale de Prevencion de Desastres (México)

CONRED - Coordinadora Nacional para la Reducción de Desastres

COSPEC - Correlation Spectrometer

CVGHM (formerly VSI) - Center of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation

CVO - Cascades Volcano Observatory (USGS)

GMS - Geostationary Meteorological Satellite

GOES - Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite

GVO - Goma Volcano Observatory

GVP - Global Volcanism Program (Smithsonian Institution)

HVO - Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (USGS)

ICE - Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (Costa Rica)

IG - Instituto Geofísico (Ecuador)

IGNS - Institute of Geological and Nuclear Sciences (New Zealand) - now GNS Science

INETER - Instituto Nicaragüense de Estudios Territoriales (Nicaragua)

INGEMMET - Instituto Geológical Minero y Metalúrgico (Peru)

INGEOMINAS - Instituto Colombiano de Geología y Minería (Colombia)

INGV-CT - Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - Sezione di Catania (Italy)

INSIVUMEH - Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia e Hidrologia (Guatemala)

IRD - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (France)

JMA - Japanese Meteorological Agency

KEMSD - Kamchatkan Experimental and Methodical Seismilogical Department

KVERT - Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team

M - magnitude

METEOSAT - Meteorological Satellite

MEVO - Mount Erebus Volcano Observatory

MODIS - Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer

MVO - Montserrat Volcano Observatory

MWO - Meteorological Watch Office

NEIC - National Earthquake Information Center

NIED - National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention (Japan)

NOAA - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

NOTAM - Notice to Airmen

OVDAS - Observatorio Volcanologico de los Andes del Sur (Chile)

OFDA - Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance

ONEMI - Oficina Nacional de Emergencia - Ministerio del Interior (Chile)

OVPDLF - Observatoire Volcanologique du Piton de la Fournaise (France)

OVSICORI-UNA - Observatorio Vulcanologico y Sismologico de Costa Rica, Universidad Nacional (Costa Rica)

PHIVOLCS - Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Philippines)

RSAM - Real-time Seismic Amplitude Measurement

RVO - Rabaul Volcano Observatory

SERNAGEOMIN - Servicio Nacional de Geologia y Mineria (Chile)

SIGMET - Significant Meteorological Information

SNET - Servicio Nacional de Estudios Territoriales (El Salvador)

SVERT - Sakhalin Volcanic Eruption Response Team (Russia)

USAID - US Agency for International Development

USGS - United States Geological Survey

UTC - Coordinated Universal Time

VAAC - Volcanic Ash Advisory Center

VAFTAD - Volcanic Ash Forecast Transport And Dispersion

VDAP - Volcano Disaster Assistance Program (USGS)

VHP - Volcano Hazards Program (USGS)

VRC - Volcano Research Center (Japan)