Japanese volcano Sakurajima erupts

Japanese volcano Sakurajima erupts

Sakurajima, one of Japan’s most active volcanoes, erupted enormously Friday evening with a flaming blast, sending molten lava and gases high flying into the sky.

In a newly released statement, Japan’s Meteorological Agency said the active volcano on the southern island of Kyushu exploded at around 7 p.m. (1000 GMT), and created a “dirty” thunderstorm.

The Meteorological Agency expanded an already existing no-go zone around the volcano to a two-kilometer (1.2-mile) radius. However, officials assured that there were no immediate reports of any injuries related to the volcanic eruption.

Kazuhiro Ishihara, a volcanologist at Kyoto University, said, “I don’t think there will be any serious impact from the explosion. But of course we must keep monitoring the volcanic activity.”

Japanese television channels showed a fiery orange burst out of a side of the erupting volcano. Videos also featured lightning-like flashes accompanied by dark gray smoke billowing into the sky. The volcano’s last major eruption occurred in September last year.

The Japanese archipelago is characterized by an arc of volcanoes and fault lines in the Pacific Basin, known as the Pacific “Ring of Fire,” which has more than one hundred volcanoes. Mount Ontake’s eruption in 2014 killed 57 people and injured many more in central Japan.

According to a report from the NWA Online, Japanese television showed an orange burst out of the side of the volcano, near the summit, accompanied by lightninglike flashes. Dark gray smoke billowed into the sky.

The Meteorological Agency banned entry to the area, expanding an existing no-go zone around the crater to a milewide radius, according to public broadcaster NHK. There were no immediate reports of injuries.

A volcano in Japan – one of the country’s most active – has erupted with a spectacular display, shooting ash a mile into the night sky and sending thick lava down its slopes. Sakurajima, situated in southern Japan and about 30 miles from a nuclear plant, violently erupted and spewed fountains of lava in the previous week. Despite what Japan’s Meteorological Agency called an “explosive eruption,” there has not been any report so far of damage and disrupted operations at the nearby power station, as well as any immediate report of injuries elsewhere, told the TechTimes.

The I4U notes that, the volcanic activity in Sakurajima has been recorded as well which was a difficult task since volcanic lighting also burst through the lava and dark clouds of smoke.

Sakurajima has been monitored by JMA researchers since August 2015 when they had to issue a level 4 warning, meaning people should be ready to move out the area any time but since then it has gone back to level 3.

“Sakurajima volcano has been very active,” Manabu Hashimoto, a professor at the Disaster Prevention Research Institute at Kyoto University told ABC News. “I think most researchers consider that Sakurajima will erupt again.”