Activity for the week of 4 February-10 February 2009
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.
New Activity / Unrest
| Kyushu (Japan)
| 31.593°N, 130.657°E
| Elevation 1117 m
JMA reported that Sakura-jima erupted explosively eight times during 1-2 February; bombs were deposited as far away as 800 m from the Showa crater (on the E slope of Minami-dake, or "south mountain," at an elevation of about 800 m). JMA raised the Alert Level from 2 to 3 on 2 February. Based on information from JMA, the Tokyo VAAC reported that during 4-5 February explosions and eruptions produced plumes that rose to altitudes of 2.1-2.4 km (7,000-8,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SE. On 9 February a pilot reported that an ash plume rose to an altitude of 2.4 km (8,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SE.
Sources: Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA), Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Honshu (Japan)
| 36.406°N, 138.523°E
| Elevation 2568 m
JMA reported that an eruption from Asama produced ash plumes that rose to altitudes of 3-4 km (10,000-13,100 ft) a.s.l. during 9-10 February. Ash fell in areas to the NE on 9 February.
Source: Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA)
| United States
| 60.485°N, 152.742°W
| Elevation 3108 m
AVO reported that during 4-10 February seismic activity at Redoubt fluctuated but remained elevated well above background levels. On 7 February, aerial observers reported continued steaming from an area around the 1989-90 lava dome and water discharge along the Drift Glacier. Clear web camera views during 7-9 February showed small steam plumes.
Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)
| Andaman Islands (India)
| 12.278°N, 93.858°E
| Elevation 354 m
Based on analysis of satellite imagery, SIGMET notices, and pilot observations, the Darwin VAAC reported that on 5 February an ash plume from Barren Island rose to an altitude of 3 km (10,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SSE.
Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)
| 42.833°S, 72.646°W
| Elevation 1122 m
Based on SIGMET notices, analysis of satellite imagery, reports from the Puerto Montt Flight Information Region (FIR), and web camera views, the Buenos Aires VAAC reported that on 4, 6, and 7 February ash plumes from Chaitén rose to altitudes 2-3 km (6,500-10,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted N, NE, and SE.
Source: Buenos Aires Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| 19.514°N, 103.62°W
| Elevation 3850 m
During 3-10 February, white and gray plumes from Colima rose to altitudes of 3.9-4.9 km (12,800-16,100 ft) a.s.l. On 4 and 6 February, incandescent material was ejected 50 m above the summit.
Source: Gobierno del Estado de Colima
| Halmahera (Indonesia)
| 1.693°N, 127.894°E
| Elevation 1229 m
Based on analysis of satellite imagery, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 9-10 February ash plumes from Dukono rose to an altitude of 3 km (10,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted E and SE.
Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)
| 14.473°N, 90.88°W
| Elevation 3763 m
On 6, 8, and 10 February, INSIVUMEH reported that multiple explosions from Fuego produced ash plumes that rose to altitudes of 4.1-5.4 km (13,500-17,700 ft) a.s.l. and drifted S and SW. Ashfall was reported in areas downwind. Some explosions produced rumbling sounds and constant avalanches of blocks descended the flanks. On 8 February, explosions were accompanied by shock waves that were detected 10-15 km away.
Source: Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia, e Hidrologia (INSIVUMEH)
| Eastern Kamchatka (Russia)
| 54.049°N, 159.443°E
| Elevation 1513 m
KVERT reported that seismic activity at Karymsky was above background levels during 1-4 February and at background levels on the other days during 30 January-6 February. Analysis of satellite imagery revealed a weak thermal anomaly in the crater on 30 January; clouds prohibited views during the rest of the reporting period. The Level of Concern Color Code remained at Orange.
Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)
| Hawaiian Islands (USA)
| 19.421°N, 155.287°W
| Elevation 1222 m
HVO reported that during 4-10 February lava flowed SE from underneath Kilauea's Thanksgiving Eve Breakout (TEB) and rootless shield complex through a lava tube system, reaching the Waikupanaha and Waha'ula ocean entries. On 7 and 8 February, multiple explosions at the ocean entry were seen. On 9 February, booming noises and explosions were noted at the ocean entry; observers reported lava bubble bursts at 15-30 minute intervals. Seismicity and later observations indicated that the bench had collapsed. Incandescence originated from the Prince lobe, the flow that feeds the Waha'ula ocean entry. Thermal anomalies suggesting surface flows were noted on the coastal plain and on the pali.
The vent in Halema'uma'u crater continued to produce a predominantly white plume that drifted mainly SW; the plume turned brown on 5 and 7 February. Small amounts of tephra were routinely collected. Incandescence was intermittently seen from the vent, and sounds resembling rushing gas and rockfalls were sometimes heard in the vicinity of the crater. Geologists looked into the vent on 4 and 6 February and saw lava rising and falling about 115-120 m below the vent rim. The sulfur dioxide emission rate at the summit was 900 tonnes per day on 4 and 9 February, and 500 tonnes on 5 February; the 2003-2007 average rate was 140 tonnes per day.
Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)
| 19.023°N, 98.622°W
| Elevation 5393 m
CENAPRED reported that emissions of steam and gas from Popocatépetl were visible during 4-10 February; the plumes occasionally contained slight amounts of ash. On 6 February, an ash plume rose 800 m above the crater at 0839, and was followed by 75 minutes of increased seismicity.
Source: Centro Nacional de Prevencion de Desastres (CENAPRED)
| New Britain (Papua New Guinea)
| 4.271°S, 152.203°E
| Elevation 688 m
Based on analysis of satellite imagery, the Darwin VAAC reported that on 9 February an ash plume from Rabaul caldera's Tavurvur cone rose to an altitude of 3 km (10,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SE.
Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)
| 2.005°S, 78.341°W
| Elevation 5286 m
Based on pilot observations, the Washington VAAC reported that on 9 February a plume from Sangay rose to an altitude of 7.9 km (26,000 ft) a.s.l. No ash was identified on satellite imagery, but meteoric clouds were also present in the area.
Source: Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| 14.757°N, 91.552°W
| Elevation 3745 m
Based on analysis of satellite imagery, the Washington VAAC reported that on 4 February multiple ash puffs from Santa María's Santiaguito lava dome complex drifted W. On 6 February, INSIVUMEH reported that fumarolic plumes rose 80 m above the crater and rifted S and SW. Explosions produced plumes that rose to altitudes of 2.8-3.1 km (9,200-10,200 ft) a.s.l. and also drifted SW. Ashfall was reported in areas downwind.
Sources: Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia, e Hidrologia (INSIVUMEH), Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Central Kamchatka (Russia)
| 56.653°N, 161.36°E
| Elevation 3283 m
KVERT reported that seismic activity at Shiveluch was above background levels during 30 January-6 February. Based on interpretations of seismic data, ash plumes likely rose to altitudes of 5.3 km (17,400 ft) a.s.l. Lava flows continued to be active on the S and N flanks. Weak gas-and-steam activity was noted on 30 January and 1 February. Analysis of satellite imagery revealed a large thermal anomaly on the lava dome during 30 January-2 February, and on 5 February. The Level of Concern Color Code remained at Orange.
Based on information from KEMSD, the Tokyo VAAC reported that an eruption on 7 February produced a plume that rose to an altitude of 4.9 km (16,000 ft) a.s.l.
Sources: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT), Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| 16.72°N, 62.18°W
| Elevation 915 m
MVO reported that during 30 January-6 February activity from the Soufrière Hills lava dome increased slightly, although seismic activity was low. Three rockfalls were detected. On 5 February, one small pyroclastic flow that originated in a gully on the N side of the lava dome traveled less than 1 km and stopped in Tyre's Ghaut (NW). The Hazard Level remained at 4.
Source: Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO)
| 1.467°S, 78.442°W
| Elevation 5023 m
The IG reported that during 4-8 February visual observations of Tungurahua were limited due to cloud cover; steam-and-ash plumes rose 0.5-1 km above the summit during 7 and 9-10 February. Plumes drifted W and NW. Cannon shots, roaring noises, and sounds resembling blocks rolling down the flanks were seldom reported. Based on pilot observations, the Washington VAAC reported that an ash plume rose to an altitude of 8.5 km (28,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SSE. On 4 and 8 February IG reported that ash fell in areas to the SW. Incandescence from the crater was seen at night on 6 February.
Sources: Instituto Geofísico-Escuela Politécnica Nacional (IG), Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
Criteria & Disclaimers
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.
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.
For site security purposes and to ensure that this service remains available to all users, this government computer system employs software programs to monitor network traffic to identify unauthorized attempts to upload or change information, or otherwise cause damage. Unauthorized attempts to upload information or change information on this website are strictly prohibited and may be punishable under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act of 1986 and the National Information Infrastructure Protection Act. Information may also be used for authorized law enforcement investigations. (Last modified September 21, 1999.)
U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, VA, USA
Contact: USGS Web Team
USGS Privacy Statement
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.