Case Study Summary_Ansari

I chose to write about the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens. In my senior year of high school I did a small GIS project on the Oso mudslides of 2013/2014. During that project I found that an overarching factor in those mudslides and their severity was due to the 1980 eruption, and since then I’ve always wanted to know more about it!

On May 18, 1980 at approximately 8:32 am, Mount St. Helens erupted for the first time in over a hundred years. After a series of small earthquakes that started two months prior, that led to landslides that led to flooding that finally led to the eruption. Though it was closely monitored by geologists and volcanologists, Helens took everyone by surprise.

The volcano blew from its side, instead of its top as most would suspect. The result was an incredibly large cloud of ash that encompassed almost three states around Washington.

Since the USGS had watched Helens closely for the two months since the earthquakes started, they were relatively quick to act and clean up and work with the state and federal governments to help the people of Skamania county and its surrounding areas. The death toll today stands at ~57 people.

Today, Helens’ elevation has decreased significantly as shown in the figure above, and is watched even closer now. Because 1980 was the first time it had erupted in over one hundred years, there were no disaster prevention plans in place for Washington state that dealt specifically with volcanoes. Helens, however, gave them a reason to devise a plan. Now, Congress annually funds different Volcano Observatory programs across the United States in hopes of preventing a repeat of 1980.

Case Study Summary Hogan

In November of 1984, the Nevado Ruiz started experiencing regular tremors. Over the next 51 weeks, the volcano continued to show signs of eruption, until finally erupting on November 13,1981. It would become one of the most devastating eruptions in living memory, causing over 23,000 deaths and costing almost a quarter of the Columbian GDP. Unsurprisingly, the main threats of the disaster were mudslides caused by mass ice-melt on the glacier of the volcano. The mud-slides would mainly threaten the town of Armero, 75 km east of the Nevado Ruiz.

Almost every single person involved handled the situation incorrectly. The town itself was built on a plane made by the previous eruption of the Nevado Ruiz. There was even a detailed history of the mudslide that formed the plane, explaining when, where, and how it formed. The village failed to do their due diligence on volcanic history, as did the Columbian geology institution, and the UN disaster commission. However, the USGS published a map of possible mud slide zones, and distributed it to the people of Armero. However, they did not educate people properly, there was no practice evacuation or education on evacuation routes. The mayor in the town did not think the disaster was a big deal, and was telling the national news network over HAM radio that he did not think the mudslide was a big threat as he was swept away and killed. For whatever reason, the police did not have a HAM radio, and were incommunicado when the volcano erupted at 9 pm, and did not evacuate the town in the two hours until the mudslides reached Armero. Almost every single building was destroyed, and 23 thousand people died before 1 AM, in a town of 24,000.

There is not a single mitigation method in the world that would prevent a mudslide of the magnitude that hit Armero, the only things that would help would be to move the town three hundred feet vertically, or away from the mudslide threat zones. Evacuation plans, and power independent siren systems would have gone a long way towards helping people evacuate, HOWEVER THE EVACUATION ORDER WAS NOT GIVEN, BECAUSE NOBODY PICKED UP THE PHONE OR RADIO. So sorting out the chain of command would go a long way towards resolving disasters.

On November 14, the day after the eruption, a crop duster flew over Armero to survey the damage. They almost did not find it, however there was a single culvert of trees with intact buildings. It then called the local dispatch, and the military was sent in. This was nine hours after the initial eruption, and five hours after the mudslides had subsided in Armero. Rescue operations had to be carried out purely by helicopter, which limited the scope that rescue operations could take place.

 

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Volcanic Lightning (?!)

While this may not be a specific disaster, it is a less known hazard that comes (rarely) with volcanic eruptions, and it’s just really cool. It is not crazy dangerous to humans, as it happens straight up from the volcano where there is an ash cloud and other, more hazardous things (like lava) to worry about. Volcanic lightning can occur when the lava at the surface causes an electrical charge to build up in the ash column, which eventually becomes overwhelming. To balance it out, lightning literally comes out of the volcano and flashes up towards the sky. Scientists have not done extensive research on this phenomenon and do no now a lot about it, but this is because it is very rare (and it looks like an epic clash between Zeus and Hades).

https://www.forbes.com/sites/robinandrews/2017/04/16/watch-this-volcanic-eruption-fire-out-upside-down-lightning-bolts/#adc231a236e3

 

Eruption from Kambalny After 250 Years of Dormancy

The Kamchatka Peninsula in Eastern Russia is a highly active volcanic field, frequently having two or more eruptions occurring at the same time. The peninsula has over 300 volcanoes, 29 of them active. This did not include Kambalny, which last erupted in 1767.

On March 27th, Kambalny erupted for the first time in 250 years, sending a plume of ash 7,000 meters into the atmosphere, causing a code orange for aviation danger. At this point, researchers don’t know if this eruption released any new magma or if it is just an explosion that erupted old, cold material in the vent area of the volcano. If new magma was released, we can expect more explosions to come.

https://www.wired.com/2017/03/russian-volcano-just-erupted-first-time-centuries/

https://www.rt.com/viral/382331-volcano-eruption-russia-kamchatka/

Stunning footage shows a giant Russian volcano violently erupting for the first time in 250 YEARS

  • A long dormant volcano in Russia began erupting approximately 5 days ago. According tot he article, it has not erupted in 250 years. Scientist were completely surprised by the sudden eruption. I also posted a link to an additional article following this one. There were some pretty spectacular pictures and a video on this page, but I have not mastered getting videos in these posts or whether its possible.
  • The 7,103ft tall (2.2km high) Kambalny volcano is in the Kamchatka peninsula in the far east of Russia
  • The colossal volcano recently became active and spewed out a 60-mile long ash plume visible from space
  • Snow-topped volcano last erupted and poured out lava during the reign of Catherine the Great in the 1700s

This dramatic footage show a Russian volcano awakening for the first time in 250 years.

The snow-covered colossus last erupted in the reign of Catherine the Great but in recent days has spewed out a 60-mile (100km) long ash plume that was visible from space.

Scientists on the Kamchatka peninsula in the far east of Russia had not predicted 7,103ft Kambalny volcano suddenly emerging from hibernation.

Dramatic pictures show a Russian volcano awakening for the first time in 250 years. The volcano's 60-mile (100km) long ash plume was seen from space on a Nasa Terra satellite

KAMBALNY VOLCANO

The 7,103ft tall (2.2km high) Kambalny volcano is in the Kamchatka peninsula in the far east of Russia.

The snow-topped volcano has five eruptive cones across its surface that have all previously spewed out lava.

Kambalny erupted for the first time in 250 years on March 24.

No lava flows were sent out by the volcano but a mighty ash plume that was 60 miles (100km) was captured from space bya Nasa satellite.

The eruption from Kambalny was seen from space and captured by Nasa’s Terra satellite.

The satellite image captured a 60-mile (100km) long ash plume that was spewed out by the active volcano.

Olga Girina, head of the Kamchatka Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT), said: ‘This is the first serious volcanic event at Kambalny in the modern history of scientific observations.

‘According to researchers, a strong eruption occurred 600 years ago.

‘There is information about its increased activity some 250 years ago.

‘We are keeping a close look at the volcano. It is difficult to say how the event will unfold.’

The first blast came on Saturday, delighting staff at the remote Kronotsky Nature Reserve.

The 7,103ft tall (2.2km high) Kambalny volcano is in the Kamchatka peninsula in the far east of Russia. The colossal volcano recently became active and sent red-hot ash 60 miles high (100km) into the air

Snow-topped volcano last erupted and poured out lava during the reign of Catherine the Great in the 1700s. Only 4,500 people currently live within 62 miles (100km) of Kambalny

Snow-topped volcano last erupted and poured out lava during the reign of Catherine the Great in the 1700s. Only 4,500 people currently live within 62 miles (100km) of Kambalny

Vasily Mitrinyuk, a state inspector, said: ‘This is one of the brightest events of my life.’

Liana Varavskaya, a technician, said: ‘I wasn’t afraid, quite the opposite.

‘I was happy that I could witness such a marvellous natural phenomenon.’

She said there were no tremors or other warning signals before the eruption.

The Kamchatka Peninsula, which is home to dozens of snow volcanoes, is relatively unexplored by scientists. Monitoring tools such as seismometers and webcams, which are used to collect real-time data, are not installed at the volcanic site

Only 4,500 people currently live within 62 miles (100km) of Kambalny. But Nasa scientists warned that the volcano may have spewed out large amounts of sulphur dioxide (SO2), which is harmful to human lungs

Only 4,500 people currently live within 62 miles (100km) of Kambalny. But Nasa scientists warned that the volcano may have spewed out large amounts of sulphur dioxide (SO2), which is harmful to human lungs

Pyotr Shpilenok, director of the reserve, said: ‘We have witnessed a historical event.

‘Photographers and documentary-makers have a unique opportunity to take images of Kambalny’s eruption for the first time in history.’

Kambalny is the southernmost active volcano of Kamchatka, and study of its lava suggest the last eruption was 248 years ago.

Kambalny is the southernmost active volcano of Kamchatka, a peninsula with more than 300 volcanoes. The volcanic region is in the eastern most part of Russia

Kambalny is the southernmost active volcano of Kamchatka, a peninsula with more than 300 volcanoes. The volcanic region is in the eastern most part of Russia

The eruption from Kambalny was seen from space and captured by Nasa's Terra satellite. The region is known as Russia's Land of Fire and Ice for its active volcanoes and huge glaciers

The eruption from Kambalny was seen from space and captured by Nasa’s Terra satellite. The region is known as Russia’s Land of Fire and Ice for its active volcanoes and huge glaciers

Only 4,500 people currently live within 62 miles (100km) of Kambalny.

But Nasa scientists warned that the volcano may have spewed out large amounts of sulphur dioxide (SO2), which is harmful to human lungs.

‘The higher SO2 amounts downwind could be due to multiple factors, including variable emissions at the volcano (such as an initial burst), increasing altitude of the plume downwind or decreasing ash content downwind,’ Simon Carn, an atmospheric scientist at Michigan Technological University, told the Earth Observatory.

The region is known as Russia’s Land of Fire and Ice for its active volcanoes and huge glaciers.

The Kamchatka Peninsula, which is home to 300 volcanoes, is relatively unexplored by scientists.

Scientists studied the remnants of lava that once flowed out the side of the large volcano and suggested the last eruption was 248 years ago

Olga Girina, head of the Kamchatka Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT), said: 'This is the first serious volcanic event at Kambalny in the modern history of scientific observations'

Olga Girina, head of the Kamchatka Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT), said: ‘This is the first serious volcanic event at Kambalny in the modern history of scientific observations’

Monitoring tools such as seismometers and webcams, which are used to collect real-time data, are not installed at the volcanic site.

This means any subtle clues that an eruption may occur, including increasing steam-and-gas emissions and changes in the volcano’s appearance, may have been missed by volcanologists.

The lack of monitoring could explain why scientists did not predict the volcano’s latest activity.

Pyotr Shpilenok, director of the reserve, said: 'We have witnessed a historical event. Photographers and documentary-makers have a unique opportunity to take images of Kambalny's eruption for the first time in history'

The volcano seen before its eruption on March 24. The volcano has five eruptive cones that have previously spewed out red-hot lava

The volcano seen before its eruption on March 24. The volcano has five eruptive cones that have previously spewed out red-hot lava

Alaska’s Bogoslof Volcano Eruptions

Alaska’s Bogoslof Volcano, which is located about 850 miles south of Anchorage, has been very active in the past few months. In the past three months, the volcano has erupted 36 times, with the explosion on March 4 being the largest. This particular explosion sent ash over 35,000 feet in the air and a nearby town of Dutch Harbor was warned to be on the look out for “trace amounts” of ash settling on the ground. While nobody was injured or killed in these eruptions, volcanic ash that is rocketed into the atmosphere can interfere with flight paths or even the mechanics of an airplane itself. The ash can also pose a problem to health in nearby cities, as ash and dirt in the air can be detrimental to both human and animal bodies.

Alaska’s Bogoslof Volcano is a currently active volcano, and you can read the full article here: http://www.cnbc.com/2017/03/08/alaskas-bogoslof-volcano-explodes-warnings-sent-on-north-asia-us-flights.html

Lava Explosion on Mount Etna

A group of BBC crew members and tourists found themselves under fire by boiling rocks and steam in triggered when lava flow came into contact with fallen snow  on March 16th. A total of ten people were injured in this event. The eruption came from a crater on the south-eastern side of the mountain, and caused “lava flow mixed with steam… [a] huge explosion, [and] the group was pelted with boiling rocks and steam.”

This marks the third time in three weeks that Mount Etna, Europe’s most active volcano, has erupted, spewing lava up to 200 meters upwards. The volcano overshadows Catania, Italy. The volcano  is reportedly still erupting, but the situation is under control. Due to its proximity to densely populated areas, Mount Etna is always being closely watched. As one of the sixteen “decade volcanoes,” Mount Etna is part of a project which encourages study and awareness with the goal in mind of achieving a better understanding of the volcanoes and their dangers, and be able to mitigate the impacts of natural disasters.

It is worth noting that Mount Etna is known for bursting to life up to several  times a year. The last major eruption took place in 1992. The town of Zafferana Etnea fell directly in the path of the lava flow, and while homes were buried by lava, no one was killed.

Quote and picture: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/mar/16/bbc-crew-among-those-injured-in-explosion-eruption-on-mount-etna

 

 

Explosion on erupting Mount Etna injures at least 10

At least 10 people were injured on Thursday when an explosion occurred as lava continued to spew from Sicily’s Mount Etna. Those injured were tourists and scientists investigating recent eruptions on Mount Etna, according to the Associated Press.

The explosion reportedly occurred when magma from the volcano hit snow. There were no reports of life-threatening injuries or deaths.

The dramatic clash of the extremely hot lava and colder snow or water can easily lead to a steam explosion.

The Toulouse, France, Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC) raised the aviation color code level to red on Thursday afternoon due to the ongoing eruption. A plume from the volcano was detected on satellite, but the VAAC stated that it was mainly composed of water.

 

Snow-covered Mount Etna, Europe’s most active volcano, spews lava during an eruption in the early hours of Thursday, March 16, 2017.

 

http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/explosion-on-erupting-mount-etna-injures-at-least-10/70001133

Alaska’s Bogoslof volcano explodes, warnings sent on North Asia-U.S. flights

A volcano (Bogoslof) in Alaska which has been erupting periodically since December has now released its biggest ash cloud to date. The eruption lasted for 3 hours and spewed ash up to an altitude of 35,000 feet. Ash clouds which are higher than 20,000 pose a threat to aircraft as the ash can damage the engines. This is the 36th eruption in 3 months. The Volcano is 850 miles from Anchorage and is during a high state of alert as more eruptions are possible at any time.

 

 

 

 

http://www.cnbc.com/2017/03/08/alaskas-bogoslof-volcano-explodes-warnings-sent-on-north-asia-us-flights.html

 

 

Michael Mumenthaler

Mt. Etna Erupts

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-italy-etna-volcano-idUSKBN1671QI

Labeled as “Europe’s tallest and most active volcano”, Mt. Etna erupted yesterday, February 28, and is expected to last for the next several days.

The eruption was described as having “lit up the night sky” over the island of Sicily. It has been mostly dormant for the last two years, but is noted as being able to “burst into action several times a year.”

While the lava spill may last for several more days, it began to ease down early this morning. Authorities at the Catania airport, about 30 miles away from the volcano, are tracking the movement of the ash clouds produced by the eruption.