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ARCHIVED REPORT
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ALASKA VOLCANO OBSERVATORY

WEEKLY UPDATE

Friday, May 20, 2005 12:10 AM AKDT (20:10 UTC)



MOUNT SPURR VOLCANO (CAVW#1103-04)

6118' N 15215' 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

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



CONTACT INFORMATION:



Tom Murray, Scientist-in-Charge, USGS, tlmurray@usgs.gov (907) 786-7497



John Eichelberger, Coordinating Scientist, UAF-GI, eich@gi.alaska.edu (907)

474-5530





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.

VOLCANO ALERT LEVELS
NORMAL
Volcano is in typical background, noneruptive state or, after a change from a higher level, volcanic activity has ceased and volcano has returned to noneruptive background state.
ADVISORY
Volcano is exhibiting signs of elevated unrest above known background level or, after a change from a higher level, volcanic activity has decreased significantly but continues to be closely monitored for possible renewed increase.
WATCH
Volcano is exhibiting heightened or escalating unrest with increased potential of eruption, timeframe uncertain, OR eruption is underway but poses limited hazards.
WARNING
Hazardous eruption is imminent, underway, or suspected.

AVIATION COLOR CODES
GREEN
Volcano is in typical background, noneruptive state or, after a change from a higher level, volcanic activity has ceased and volcano has returned to noneruptive background state.
YELLOW
Volcano is exhibiting signs of elevated unrest above known background level or, after a change from a higher level, volcanic activity has decreased significantly but continues to be closely monitored for possible renewed increase.
ORANGE
Volcano is exhibiting heightened or escalating unrest with increased potential of eruption, timeframe uncertain, OR eruption is underway with no or minor volcanic-ash emissions [ash-plume height specified, if possible].
RED
Eruption is imminent with significant emission of volcanic ash into the atmosphere likely OR eruption is underway or suspected with significant emission of volcanic ash into the atmosphere [ash-plume height specified, if possible].

PDF version of these definitions
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Page modified: May 27, 2014 10:23
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