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Smithsonian / USGS Weekly Volcanic Activity Report

You are currently viewing Archived reports for the week of 22 March-28 March 2006.


















 Activity for the week of 22 March-28 March 2006

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
Galeras Colombia New
Poas Costa Rica New

Anatahan Mariana Islands (USA) Ongoing
Augustine United States Ongoing
Colima Mexico Ongoing
Fuego Guatemala Ongoing
Karymsky Eastern Kamchatka (Russia) Ongoing
Kilauea Hawaiian Islands (USA) Ongoing
Pacaya Guatemala Ongoing
Raoul Island North Kermadec Ridge (New Zealand) Ongoing
Santa Maria Guatemala Ongoing
Soufriere Hills Montserrat Ongoing
St. Helens United States Ongoing
Tungurahua Ecuador Ongoing
Ulawun New Britain (Papua New Guinea) Ongoing
Veniaminof United States Ongoing


New Activity / Unrest


Volcano index photo  Galeras  | Colombia  | 1.22°N, 77.37°W  | Elevation 4276 m

Due to an increase in tremor at Galeras beginning on the morning of 28 March, INGEOMINAS raised the Alert Level from 3 ("changes in the behavior of volcanic activity have been noted") to 2 ("likely eruption in days or weeks"). On the 28th, energetic signals and tremor began that had been absent during previous weeks. In addition, seismic instruments detected very shallow low-energy hybrid signals, similar to ones recorded during 1991-1993 when dome emplacement occurred on the main crater's floor.

Sources: Servicio Geológico Colombiano (SGC), Reuters



Volcano index photo  Poas  | Costa Rica  | 10.2°N, 84.233°W  | Elevation 2708 m

On 24 March around noon, small phreatic eruptions began at Poás. The eruptions originated from the bottom of the volcano's Caliente Lake. Witnesses described a sudden emission of water and sediments S of the lake. Roaring was heard in a nearby tourist area and weak earthquakes were felt.

OVSICORI-UNA visited the E side of the volcano on 25 March and confirmed that water, blocks, and sediments from the bottom of the lake had been ejected. Several dozens of impact craters were seen with diameters between 15 and 60 cm, extending E as far as 700 m. Blocks were found that ranged in diameter from a few to 50 cm wide. During 22-27 March, harmonic tremor was recorded. On the 27th, there was a reduction in seismicity and it returned to normal levels. No deformation was measured at the volcano. A news article reported that the area around the volcano was closed to visitors. Poás last erupted in 1994.

Sources: Observatorio Vulcanologico y Sismologico de Costa Rica-Universidad Nacional (OVSICORI-UNA), Prensa Latina



Ongoing Activity


Volcano index photo  Anatahan  | Mariana Islands (USA)  | 16.35°N, 145.67°E  | Elevation 790 m

According to the Air Force Weather Agency (AFWA), on 19 March a hot spot at Anatahan was visible on satellite imagery and vog (volcanic fog) extended 200 km from the island. On 24 March around 1330, seismicity at Anatahan abruptly increased to about twice the background level. The seismicity consisted of low-amplitude tremor and small long-period earthquakes, similar to the seismicity on 17 and 18 March. On the 24th, vog from Anatahan was visible on satellite imagery extending W, then curling N. The plume was estimated to be below 1.2 km (4,000 ft) a.s.l. and no ash or hot spots were visible. Anatahan remained at Alert-level Advisory; Aviation Color Code Yellow (Volcanic activity has increased somewhat, but remains fairly low and is being closely monitored).

Sources: Emergency Management Office of the Commonwealth of the Mariana Islands and United States Geological Survey Volcano Hazards Program, Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Augustine  | United States  | 59.363°N, 153.43°W  | Elevation 1252 m

Low-level eruptive activity continued at Augustine during 17-24 March. All available information indicated that the lava dome continued to grow, but the growth rate slowed in comparison to the previous week. Signals from small block-and-ash flows, rock avalanches, rockfalls, and lava flows continued to be recorded by the seismic network though at a decreased rate. Web-camera views showed continued steaming at the summit and occasional small rockfalls. Thermal anomalies continued to be visible on satellite imagery. Low-light camera images showed a decrease in thermal features in the volcano's summit area and on the upper NE flank compared to the previous week. Visual observations during 15-22 March revealed no large-scale dome growth. Decreased SO2 gas emission was measured on 22 March in comparison to 10 and 16 March. However, the level of SO2 emission was comparable to levels in late February and early March, and remained well above background. AVO reported that dome-building eruptive activity will likely continue, perhaps intermittently, over the next several weeks or months. Augustine remained at Concern Color Code Orange.

Sources: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO), Anchorage Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)



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

Based on information from the Mexico City MWO, the Washington VAAC reported that there were several emissions from Colima during 26-27 March. The highest rising plume reached 6.1 km (20,000 ft) a.s.l. on the 26th.

Source: Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)



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

During 22-28 March, several explosions at Fuego ejected incandescent material ~50-75 m high and gas plumes to ~300 m above the volcano (13,300 ft a.s.l.). Short pyroclastic avalanches occurred on the upper flanks. On 28 March, lava flowed ~450 m S and avalanches occurred from the lava-flow fronts.

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

During 17-24 March, Strombolian activity continued at Karymsky. Several ash plumes were visible on satellite imagery at a height of ~4 km (13,100 ft) a.s.l. and extended SE and E. A thermal anomaly was seen at the volcano during periods of visibility. About 40-450 small earthquakes occurred daily. Karymsky remained at Concern Color Code 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 22-28 March, lava from Kilauea flowed off of a lava delta into the ocean at the East Lae`apuki entry. Background volcanic tremor was at normal levels at Kilauea's summit. Small, shallow earthquakes continued beneath the summit area and upper east rift zone, often occurring in bursts but, they were less numerous than during the previous week, and much less than a month ago. Volcanic tremor reached moderate levels at Pu`u `O`o. Slight inflation and deflation occurred at the volcano.

Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)



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

During 22-28 March, incandescent volcanic material was ejected tens of meters above Pacaya and lava flows extended ~100 m down the volcano's S flank. On the 28th, a new lava flow was emitted from the SW edge of the active crater. The flow reached ~150 m and avalanches occurred from the lava-flow fronts.

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



Volcano index photo  Raoul Island  | North Kermadec Ridge (New Zealand)  | 29.27°S, 177.92°W  | Elevation 516 m

After a 17 March eruption at Green Lake on Raoul Island, no new eruptions occurred and seismicity declined through 24 March. GNS observed the volcano via photographs and video on the afternoon of the 17th, and noted that many new craters had formed in and around Green Lake and that pre-existing 1964 craters had reactivated. The main steam columns were derived from Crater I, Marker Bay, and Crater XI. The eruption blew over mature trees as far as 200 m from the eruption site and deposited dark gray hydrothermal mud and ballistic blocks.

An aerial inspection on 21 March revealed that steam discharge from vents had declined significantly owing to a dramatic (6-8 m) rise in Green Lake's water level, and consequent drowning of most of the active vents. There was no evidence of further eruptions after 17 March. There was also no evidence that any activity occurred at the 1964 craters NW of crater gully, but many new craters had formed at the mouth of the gully where hot, bare ground was present. GNS reported that as the hydrothermal system adjusts to the increased fluid pressure, further eruptions remain possible. They recommended that access to the active crater area should be restricted to the margins of the areas affected to date and the Green Lake area should not be entered. According to news reports, the search for a missing person on the island ceased around 22 March. Raoul Island remained at Alert Level 2 (minor eruptive activity).

Sources: Associated Press, GeoNet



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

A large number of weak-to-moderate explosions occurred at Santa María's Santiaguito lava-dome complex during 22-28 March, producing ash plumes that rose to ~1 km above the volcano (15,650 ft a.s.l.). The plumes drifted SW, depositing ash on properties 8-10 km away. On several days, short pyroclastic flows and block-and-ash avalanches descended the SW flank of Caliente Dome.

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



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

Observations of Soufrière Hills during 17-24 March revealed that lava-dome growth was focused in the summit area and towards the E and NE. The N side of the lava dome showed little change. Rockfalls and pyroclastic flows were restricted to the Tar River Valley and they were particularly numerous on 19-20 March. The largest pyroclastic flows traveled as far as 2 km down Tar River Valley. There was an increase in gas emission during the report period. The sulfur-dioxide flux averaged 1,034 metric tons per day, with high gas emissions occurring on days of elevated pyroclastic-flow activity. The hydrogen chloride to sulfur dioxide ratio was 2.8 on 22 March. The ground-deformation network continued to indicate deflation across the volcano.

Sources: Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO), Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)



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

Growth of the new lava dome inside the crater of Mount St. Helens continued during 22-28 March, accompanied by low rates of seismicity, low emissions of steam and volcanic gases, and minor production of ash. Very small periodic earthquakes occurred every few minutes that were punctuated by occasional larger events. The GPS (Global Positioning System) network on the volcano continued to show spine motion on the active lava dome of ~1 m per day. St. Helens remained at Volcano Advisory (Alert Level 2); aviation color code Orange.

Source: US Geological Survey Cascades Volcano Observatory (CVO)



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

During 22-27 March, small-to-moderate explosions occurred at Tungurahua that consisted of gas, steam, and small amounts of ash. Plumes rose as high as ~1 km above the volcano (19,750 ft a.s.l.) on several days. An explosion on 26 March was accompanied by incandescent blocks that rolled down the volcano's NW flank.

Sources: Instituto Geofísico-Escuela Politécnica Nacional (IG), Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Ulawun  | New Britain (Papua New Guinea)  | 5.05°S, 151.33°E  | Elevation 2334 m

Based on a pilot report, the Darwin VAAC reported that ash from Ulawun was visible at a height of ~3 km (10,000 ft) a.s.l. Ash was not visible on satellite imagery due to meteorological clouds around the volcano.

Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)



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

Web-camera images of Veniaminof on 24 March showed a steam-and-ash plume drifting from the summit cone at a height less than 2.3 km (7,600 ft) a.s.l. This level of activity was similar to activity on 23 March, but higher than activity on 21 and 22 March when a very diffuse steam-and-ash plume was confined to the summit caldera. The flow of seismic data from Veniaminof stopped on the evening of 21 March due to technical problems. The Concern Color Code remained at Yellow.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)



Weekly Reports Archive

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Batur Iliwerung Myojinsho St. Helens
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Calbuco Kaba Nisyros Suwanosejima
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Cameroon Kambalny NW Rota-1 Tair, Jebel at
Campi Flegrei del Mar di Sicilia Kanaga Nyamuragira Takawangha
Cayambe Kanlaon Nyiragongo Talang
Cereme Karangetang Okataina Tambora
Chachadake [Tiatia] Karkar Okmok Tanaga
Chaiten Karthala Ontakesan Tandikat-Singgalang
Chiginagak Karymsky Oraefajokull Tangkoko-Duasudara
Chikurachki Kasatochi Osorno Tangkubanparahu
Chiles-Cerro Negro Katla Pacaya Tara, Batu
Chillan, Nevados de Kavachi Pagan Telica
Chirinkotan Kelimutu Palena Volcanic Group Tenerife
Chirpoi Kelut Paluweh Tengger Caldera
Cleveland Kerinci Panarea Three Sisters
Colima Ketoi Papandayan Tinakula
Colo Kharimkotan Parker Tofua
Concepcion Kick 'em Jenny Pavlof Tokachidake
Copahue Kikai Peuet Sague Tolbachik
Cotopaxi Kilauea Pinatubo Toliman
Cuicocha Kirishimayama Planchon-Peteroa Tongariro
Cumbal Kizimen Poas Tungurahua
Dabbahu Klyuchevskoy Popocatepetl Turrialba
Dempo Kolokol Group Puyehue-Cordon Caulle Ubinas
Descabezado Grande Korovin Rabaul Ulawun
Dieng Volcanic Complex Koryaksky Raikoke Unknown Source
Dukono Krakatau Ranakah Unnamed
Ebeko Krummel-Garbuna-Welcker Raoul Island Unnamed
Ebulobo Kuchinoerabujima Rasshua Veniaminof
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Fernandina Lengai, Ol Doinyo Ruapehu Zhupanovsky
Fogo Leroboleng Ruiz, Nevado del Zubair Group
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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.

5. USGS Disclaimer Statement for this Website:

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.

Some of the documents on this server may contain live references (or pointers) to information created and maintained by other organizations. Please note that USGS does not control and cannot guarantee the relevance, timeliness, or accuracy of these outside materials.

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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)