Cleveland Volcano Back in Action

Earlier I reported on Cleveland volcano, situated on Chuginadak island in the Aleutians, which had it’s alert status raised to orange, (watch). It quieted down some after that, it’s alert status was lowered, and all seemed peaceful for a few days until now, and it’s back in action following a swarm of earthquakes in the immediate region.

Earthquakes this week in the Fox Islands near Cleveland Volcano

In this picture Cleveland volcano is second from the top and we can see the localized earthquake swarm just north of the subduction zone. (Click for larger view)

Cleveland’s lava dome has been steadily growing, from 262 ft. Aug. 30th, to 394 ft. currently, filling the floor of the crater,  and as we know that’s likely to increase pressure in volcano’s main vent to the point of explosive eruption, or at least lava flows onto the flanks of the volcano.

In the coming days we may expect small explosions, and perhaps ash plumes up to 20,000 ft. AVO is not connecting the resumed activity at Cleveland with the nearby 6.8 quake and it’s numerous aftershocks but I don’t think this is coincidental at all. Strong thermal anomalies have been observed on Cleveland since the status downgrade and the clearing of cloud cover, after which better satellite observations of the volcano were possible. I sure do wish I could get at those satellites and their data, but I guess that’s not available to the public.

Just as an aside here, a cluster of earthquakes have occurred over the last three days off east coast of Honshu Japan. I read somewhere online that someone was warning of a massive earthquake in store for Tokyo. The recent quakes are centered about 170 miles northeast of Tokyo, but none of them are greater than magnitude 5.2… so far.

I’m not sure where this fellow warning of the megaquake got his information but predicting earthquakes is a very tricky business that no one has mastered as yet. Still I’ll be monitoring seismic activity there.


About Martina Vaslovik

Volcano nerd and seismogeek
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