Printer friendly versionALASKA VOLCANO OBSERVATORY
Wednesday, January 11, 2006 4:15 PM AKST (115 UTC)
59.3633°N 153.4333°W, Summit Elevation 4134 ft (1260 m)
Current Level of Concern Color Code: RED
Unrest at Augustine continues and seismicity has begun to increase to higher levels over the past 4 hours. This may indicate that additional eruptive episodes are possible in the next 24 to 48 hours.
AVO scientists made an over flight of the volcano this afternoon and observed a pure white steam cloud rising to about 11,500 feet above sea level and drifting northeast. Very little volcanic ash was observed on the island itself, although volcanic mudflows were evident on the east, south and west sides of the volcano. AVO observers also noted minor rock and snow avalanche deposits high on the southwest part of the edifice.
The ash plume that was produced early this morning has begun to dissipate and AVO has received reports of a brown haze in the air over the central part of Cook Inlet. Significant ash fall from the ash cloud produced this morning is not expected, but it is possible for a very light dusting of ash to occur on areas northwest of Augustine Island. Ash fall from this ash cloud is not expected to occur in Anchorage and vicinity.
If the volcano follows a pattern similar to the 1976 and 1986 eruptions, we would expect a further intensification of seismic activity prior to similar or larger explosive events. It is also possible that an explosive eruption could occur with little or no warning.
AVO is monitoring the situation closely and will issue further updates as new information and analyses become available.
U.S. Geological Survey: Hazards associated with volcanic ash fall
NOAA National Weather Service: Ash cloud trajectories and aviation warnings
NOAA West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center: Tsunami issues related to Augustine
Alaska Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management: Community preparedness
Augustine Volcano is a 1260 m high (4134 ft) conical-shaped island stratovolcano located in southern Cook Inlet, about 290 km (180 mi) southwest of Anchorage, Alaska and 120 km (75 mi) southwest of Homer, Alaska. Historically, Augustine is the most active volcano in the Cook Inlet region with significant eruptions in 1812, 1883, 1908, 1935, 1963-64, 1976, and 1986. These eruptions were primarily explosive events that produced volcanic ash clouds (to 30,000-40,000 feet above sea level), ash fall, pyroclastic flows, and lava domes or flows. During the 1883 eruption, a large avalanche on the north flank of the volcano flowed into Cook Inlet and may have initiated a tsunami observed at Nanwalek, about 90 km to the east.
ABBREVIATED COLOR CODE KEY
(contact AVO for complete description):
GREEN volcano is dormant; normal seismicity and fumarolic activity occurring
YELLOW volcano is restless; eruption may occur
ORANGE volcano is in eruption or eruption may occur at any time
RED significant eruption is occurring or explosive eruption expected at any time
VOLCANO INFORMATION ON THE INTERNET: http://www.avo.alaska.edu
RECORDING ON THE STATUS OF ALASKA'S VOLCANOES (907) 786-7478
Tom Murray, Scientist-in-Charge, USGS
firstname.lastname@example.org (907) 786-7497
Steve McNutt, Acting Coordinating Scientist, UAF-GI
email@example.com (907) 474-7131 OR (907) 474-7274
The Alaska Volcano Observatory is a cooperative program of the U.S. Geological Survey, the University of Alaska Fairbanks Geophysical Institute, and the Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys.