Nature

West Coast Seismic Alert: Volcanoes Erupt, Earthquake Swarms At Mount St. Helens

Mount St. Helens, Mount Rainier and Mount Hood are all major volcanoes that lie along the infamous “Ring of Fire” that runs down the west coast of the United States, and all of the seismic activity that has been taking place in the region has many concerned about what may happen next.  Earlier this month, I wrote about how 45 earthquakes of magnitude 2.5 or greater hit Alaska in just one 24 hour period.  This week, it is volcanic activity that is raising concerns.  The earthquake swarms at Mount St. Helens are making headlines all over the globe, and on Tuesday two major volcanoes in Alaska suddenly erupted on the exact same day…

An eruption at Bogoslof volcano – one of two to erupt in the Aleutian Islands Tuesday – is its first after more than two months of inactivity, causing ash to fall in a nearby community before drifting south over the Pacific Ocean.

The Alaska Volcano Observatory said Tuesday night’s eruption at the volcano about 60 miles west of Unalaska, which began just after 10:30 p.m. and lasted for 73 minutes, sent a plume to an altitude of 34,000 feet.

Overall, 39 volcanoes around the world are either erupting right now or have recently erupted according to Volcano Discovery.

Most of those active volcanoes are along the Ring of Fire.

Fortunately, the U.S. portion of the Ring of Fire has been less active than other areas in recent years.  But experts assure us that will eventually change because seismic tension continues to build.  One example of this is what is happening at Mount St. Helens right now.  According to scientists, the famous volcano is currently going through what is known as a “magma recharge”…

Since mid-April, small earthquakes have been cropping up deep beneath Mount St Helens at ‘relatively high rates,’ bringing roughly one tremor every few hours.

In the last 30 days, scientists have located 55 seismic events in the vicinity, and say there may be well over 100 earthquakes linked to the swarm so far.

The activity falls in line with magma recharge thought to be underway since 2008.

Someday it will erupt again, and the geologists that monitor these things are watching the latest developments very carefully…

“Mount St. Helens is at normal background levels of activity,” Liz Westby, a geologist with the U.S. Geological Survey–Cascades Volcano Observatory, told ABC News. “But a bit out of the ordinary are several small magnitude earthquake swarms in March to May 2016, November 2016 and April 16 to May 5, 2017. During the April 16 to May 5, 2017, swarm, we detected well over 100 earthquakes, all below a magnitude 1.3.”

Personally, I am much more concerned about Mount Rainier than I am about Mount St. Helens.  Since the last time it erupted in the late 19th century, hundreds of thousands of people have moved into the danger zone around the volcano, and a full-blown eruption now would eclipse any other natural disaster in recorded U.S. history.

Over the last 30 days, there has also been a good bit of seismic activity at Mount Rainier, and much of it has been centered right along the core of the volcano…

Read More

May 2017
M T W T F S S
« Apr    
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031  

Archive