For the third time in one week, a volcano has erupted in Alaska’s Bogoslof Island, according to a report by CBS News. Bogoslof Island is located in the state’s Aleutian Islands, a chain of mostly volcanic islands in the Bering Sea.
The Alaska Volcano Observatory says a Coast Guard vessel crew was in the area of the Bogoslof Island on the morning of December 23, and witnessed an ash plume from the eruption that lasted for about an hour. Lava and fragmented material were ejected from the volcano, with ash emission subsiding at around 10:37 A.M.
Volcanologist Robert McGimsey said that –
The plume was estimated at below 30,000 feet. Unalaska Island, about 61 miles from the volcano, is the closest populated area, but the winds were blowing any ash away from inhabited areas.
Despite being assured that no ash would make its way into the state’s mainland, a volcanic ash cloud forecast was issued by The National Weather Service. The National Weather Service’s aviation desk had been tracking weather issues related to the Bogoslof volcano since its first eruption on December 21.
Michael Kutz, a meteorologist at the aviation desk, announced that “a single system is expected to be formed by three low-pressure systems in the Aleutian Islands come Christmas Day.”
“Stormy conditions,” he adds “are the majority of the reason why ash from the volcano on Bogoslof Island has and will not land on the mainland of Alaska post-reuption.”
The attempts of volcanologists to receive signals from monitoring stations near Bogoslof Island were interrupted because of a major storm in the area. The island itself has changed in shape since its first cartographical record, which was back in the 1700s. The changes in shape were not only caused by frequent eruptive activity, but also due to energetic wave action.
The eruption of the volcano prompted the Alaska Volcano Observatory to issue its highest alert level for aviation. Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Allen Kenitzer reported that airlines were rerouting flights around the plume, but that there were no reported delays.