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ALASKA VOLCANO OBSERVATORY
Friday, May 20, 2005 12:10 AM AKDT (20:10 UTC)
MOUNT SPURR VOLCANO (CAVW#1103-04)
61°18' N 152°15' W, Summit Elevation 11,070 ft (3,374 m)
Current Level of Concern Color Code: YELLOW
Elevated levels of seismicity continue to be recorded at Mount Spurr. No
unusual activity was observed in clear to partly cloudy satellite and web
camera images this past week. Conditions at Crater Peak and Mount Spurr do
not indicate that an eruption is imminent.
AVO web camera images showed small steam plumes throughout the week,
similar in size to those seen since early May. AVO and Cascades Volcano
Observatory staff made two overflights of the volcano last week to collect
routine gas data and make observations. The data from the flights show that
emissions of the volcanic gases carbon dioxide (CO2), sulfur dioxide (SO2),
and hydrogen sulfide (H2S) are continuing, but at the relatively low rates
seen in previous measurements over the last few months. No significant
changes in the summit lake or Crater Peak were observed.
The gases emitted by Spurr and Crater Peak may be hazardous to recreational
visitors. Skiers, snowboarders, mountaineers, and pilots (especially those
landing near the summit area) will find information regarding proximal
hazards online at: http://www.avo.alaska.edu/activity/Spurr.php
Mount Spurr volcano is an ice- and snow-covered stratovolcano located on
the west side of Cook Inlet. The only known historical eruptions occurred
in 1953 and 1992 from the Crater Peak flank vent located 3.5 km (2 mi)
south of the summit of Mount Spurr. These eruptions were brief, explosive,
and produced columns of ash that rose up to 20 km (65,000 ft) above sea
level and deposited several mm of ash in south-central Alaska, including
approximately 6 mm of ash on Anchorage in 1953. The last known eruption
from the summit of Mount Spurr was more than 5,000 years ago. Primary
hazards during future eruptions include far-traveled ash clouds, ash fall,
pyroclastic flows, and lahars or mudflows that could inundate drainages all
sides of the volcano, but primarily on the south and east flanks.
OTHER ALASKA VOLCANOES
Seismic activity is monitored in real time at 28 volcanoes in Alaska.
Satellite images of all Alaskan volcanoes are analyzed daily for evidence
of ash plumes and elevated surface temperatures. Some volcanoes may
currently display anomalous behavior but are not considered to be at a
dangerous level of unrest. Wrangell, Redoubt, Iliamna, Augustine, Snowy,
Griggs, Katmai, Novarupta, Trident, Mageik, Martin, Peulik, Aniakchak,
Veniaminof, Pavlof, Dutton, Isanotski, Shishaldin, Fisher, Westdahl,
Akutan, Makushin, Okmok, Great Sitkin, Kanaga, Tanaga, and Gareloi
volcanoes are in color code GREEN. All are at or near normal levels of
background seismicity. AVO did not detect ash plumes or significant
elevated surface temperatures in the vicinity of any volcano.
ABBREVIATED COLOR CODE KEY (contact AVO for complete description):
GREEN volcano is dormant; normal seismicity and fumarolic activity
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
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
John Eichelberger, Coordinating Scientist, UAF-GI, email@example.com (907)
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.