Activity for the week of 28 December-3 January 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.
New Activity / Unrest
| 14.473°N, 90.88°W
| Elevation 3763 m
An eruption began at Fuego on 27 December around 0545 and produced lava flows that traveled down Taniluya (SW) and Seca (W) ravines, initially extending ~800 m and 1,200 m, respectively. At 0602 a pyroclastic flow descended Seca Ravine, producing a S-drifting column of ash that rose to a height of ~2 km above the volcano (or 18,900 ft a.s.l.). Ash fell to the S of the volcano in the port of San Jose. Later that day, the lava flows reached lengths of 1.2 and 1.3 km, and pyroclastic flows traveled 1.8 and 2 km down the Taniluya and Seca ravines, respectively. Lava flows also traveled W toward Santa Teresa ravine, and SE towards Jute and Lajas ravines. A small amount of ash fell W and SW of the volcano in the villages of Panimaché (~7 km SSW), Morelia, Santa Sofía, and Los Tarros.
Volcanic activity continued through 28 December, with incandescent lava clots hurled ~75 m high, lava flows traveling down the volcano's flanks, and a dark gas-and-ash plume rising to ~1 km above the volcano (or 15,600 ft a.s.l.). Avalanches of volcanic material spalled from lava-flow fronts. On the 29th, lava only flowed in Santa Teresa ravine, reaching ~600 m. Moderate explosions continued through 3 January, depositing small amounts of ash in Panimaché village. According to a news article, none of the ~250,000 residents from the 78 communities near the volcano were evacuated.
Sources: Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia, e Hidrologia (INSIVUMEH), Reuters, Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| United States
| 59.363°N, 153.43°W
| Elevation 1252 m
Unrest continued at Augustine during 23-30 December. Seismicity rates decreased during the week, while steam-and-gas emissions continued. Brief views of the volcano during clear weather revealed that steam was continuously emitted from the volcano. The activity continued to suggest that new magma is present beneath Augustine. Based on past eruptions at Augustine, AVO expects to see a sharp increase in earthquake activity prior to a significant explosive eruption. Augustine remained at Concern Color Code Yellow.
Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)
| 19.514°N, 103.62°W
| Elevation 3850 m
During 28 December to 2 January, several small explosions occurred at Colima, producing ash plumes that reached ~6.1-7.6 km (20,000-25,000 ft) a.s.l. on 2 January.
Sources: Centro Universitario de Estudios e Investigaciones de Vulcanologia - Universidad de Colima, Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| 1.22°N, 77.37°W
| Elevation 4276 m
During 23 December to 2 January, Galeras emitted gas and small amounts of ash. On the 23rd, four events produced ash plumes that rose to ~3 km above the volcano (or 23,900 ft a.s.l.) and drifted toward the sector of Consacá, ~13 km WSW. A cluster of 33 volcano-tectonic earthquakes occurred beneath the volcano's crater during 29-30 December. The earthquakes reached a maximum magnitude of 1.2. The sulfur-dioxide flux at the volcano varied between 300 and 1,500 tons per day. Galeras remained at Alert Level 3 ("changes in the behavior of volcanic activity have been noted").
Source: Servicio Geológico Colombiano (SGC)
| Eastern Kamchatka (Russia)
| 54.049°N, 159.443°E
| Elevation 1513 m
KVERT reported on 30 December that a new 60- to 80-m diameter cone formed at Karymsky's summit. A small lava dome that was 20-30 m in diameter was noted in the crater of the cone. During 23-30 December, many weak, shallow earthquakes were recorded at the volcano. Interpretations of seismic data suggested that seven ash plumes rose 2.5-4 km (8,200-13,100 ft) a.s.l. during 24 and 26-27 December. Ash plumes extended mainly E, SE, and occasionally SW of the volcano. KVERT reported that ash emissions could affect low-flying aircraft in the vicinity of the volcano. Karymsky remained at Concern Color Code Orange.
Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)
| Hawaiian Islands (USA)
| 19.421°N, 155.287°W
| Elevation 1222 m
During 28 December to 3 January, lava from Kilauea continued to enter the sea at the East Lae`apuki area and surface lava flows were visible on the Pulama pali fault scarp. Background volcanic tremor was near normal levels at Kilauea's summit. Volcanic tremor reached moderate levels at Pu`u `O`o. Small amounts of deformation occurred at the volcano.
Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)
| 0.077°S, 77.656°W
| Elevation 3562 m
IG reported that during 19-25 December, seismicity was at low levels at Reventador and several small explosions occurred. According to the Washington VAAC, satellite imagery showed an ash plume at a height around 7.6 km (25,000 ft) a.s.l. extending NW on 29 December.
Sources: Instituto Geofísico-Escuela Politécnica Nacional (IG), Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| El Salvador
| 13.853°N, 89.63°W
| Elevation 2381 m
Observations of Santa Ana's crater on 28 December revealed that there were continuous emissions of steam and gas from the lagoon and fumaroles located within the crater. Gas rose 200-500 m above the crater (or 8,400-9,400) and drifted SW. On 30 December, seismicity at Santa Ana was above background levels. Small earthquakes occurred, which were interpreted as being associated with gas pulses. Gas emissions rose to low levels. The Alert Level remained at Red, the highest level, within a 5-km radius around the volcano's summit crater.
Source: Servicio Nacional de Estudios Territoriales (SNET)
| 14.757°N, 91.552°W
| Elevation 3745 m
On 2 January several explosions occurred at Santa María's Santiaguito lava-dome complex. Resultant ash emissions drifted SW. Lava avalanches originated from the SW edge of the Caliente dome, and from the fronts of active lava flows on the volcano's SW flank.
Source: Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia, e Hidrologia (INSIVUMEH)
| 16.72°N, 62.18°W
| Elevation 915 m
Volcanic and seismic activity at Soufrière Hills remained at elevated levels during 23-30 December. Images indicated that the lava dome continued to grow over a broad sector extending from the SW around to the NE. Numerous small rockfalls continued on the S, W, and NE sides of the lava dome, adding to the talus in the upper reaches of the Tar River Valley to the NE. The sulfur-dioxide flux averaged 510 metric tons per day.
Source: Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO)
| 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 28 December to 3 January, accompanied by low rates of seismicity, low emissions of steam and volcanic gases, and minor production of ash. There were no significant changes in seismicity or deformation during the report period. Small earthquakes continued to be recorded every 2-3 minutes, with slightly larger events occurring intermittently. Tiltmeters within 500 m of the new lava dome showed small amounts of ground deformation. St Helens remained at Volcano Advisory (Alert Level 2); aviation color code Orange.
Source: US Geological Survey Cascades Volcano Observatory (CVO)
| 1.467°S, 78.442°W
| Elevation 5023 m
During 28 December to 2 January, volcanic activity at Tungurahua remained at low levels with small emissions of steam and gas, with low ash content. Plumes rose to a maximum height of 6.1 km (20,000 ft) a.s.l. on 29 December and 2 January.
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.
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