Japanese volcano spews plumes of ash, people warned away

Alert level for the volcano has been raised to 3 on a scale of 5


Reuters October 20, 2021
A video grab from the Japan Meteorological Agency's live camera image shows an eruption of Mount Aso in Aso, Kumamoto prefecture, southwestern Japan, October 20, 2021. PHOTO: REUTERS

TOKYO:

A volcano erupted in Japan on Wednesday, blasting ash several miles into the sky and prompting officials to warn against the threat of lava flows and falling rocks, but there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage.

Mount Aso, a tourist destination on the main southern island of Kyushu, sent plumes of ash 3.5 km (2.2 miles) high when it erupted at about 11:43 a.m. (0243 GMT), the Japan Meteorological Agency said.

It raised the alert level for the volcano to 3 on a scale of 5, telling people not to approach, and warned of a risk of large falling rocks and pyroclastic flows within a radius of about 1 km (0.6 mile) around the mountain's Nakadake crater.

Read More: La Palma residents told to lock down as volcano lava pours into sea

The government is checking to determine the status of a number of climbers on the mountain at the time, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno told reporters, but added that there were no reports of casualties.

Television networks broadcast images of a dark cloud of ash looming over the volcano that swiftly obscured large swathes of the mountain.

Ash falls from the 1,592-metre (5,222-foot) mountain in the prefecture of Kumamoto are expected to shower nearby towns until late afternoon, the weather agency added.

Mount Aso had a small eruption in 2019, while Japan's worst volcanic disaster in nearly 90 years killed 63 people on Mount Ontake in September 2014.

 

COMMENTS

Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ

E-Publications

Most Read