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Alaskan volcano prompts 'red' alert, disrupts flights

Courtesy: Wikipedia

Courtesy: Wikipedia

Cheryl Santa Maria
Digital Reporter

Wednesday, June 4, 2014, 6:35 PM - A volcanic eruption emanating out of Alaska's Pavlof volcano has sent plume of ash and smoke into the atmosphere, grounding flights two days in a row.

The crater, which has been erupting on and off for years, became increasingly active earlier this week prompting authorities to issue a 'red' alert for the first time in five years.

That has since been downgraded -- but regional airline PenAir was forced to start cancelling flights Tuesday, due to a mix of high winds and ash that have been obstructing visibility.

Additional flights were grounded Wednesday as the volcano continued to shoot lava up to a height of nearly 500 metres.

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The ash plume has reached a height of 7,315 metres and has drifted east 80 kilometres.

"The eruptive activity continues pretty strong," geologist Game McGimsey told Reuters. "There is lava fountaining going on. It's very visible at night time from web cams."

The 2,518-metre volcano is located 950 kilometres southwest of Anchorage in a remote area.

It is considered one of the most active volcanoes in the U.S.


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