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BREAKING: White Island / Whakaari erupts (+Wind Maps for ash)

Posted by WW Forecast Team on Mon, 09/12/2019 - 15:36

BREAKING NEWS --- UPDATED 3:34pm --- White Island in New Zealand's Bay of Plenty region has erupted this afternoon with a significant plume seen from land.

NZ news media outlets are reporting there have been injuries on the island.

The volcano can be seen erupting on webcam via GeoNet here.

WeatherWatch.co.nz says winds are fairly light in the area today with ash visible on some satellite imagery not straying far from the island.

Winds at the moment should see any ash/smoke remain at sea. Tonight winds look light and variable around the island. It's possible some international flights may ensure they go further around this area but for now WeatherWatch.co.nz doesn't expect any major issues with flight plans in the NZ area as typically White Island isn't under most flight paths. Also, the size of this eruption should keep it fairly localised.

CURRENT WINDS (3pm Monday)
Red circle indicates White Island and arrows show current wind flows. Winds may be drifting towards East Cape this afternoon but by dusk they will reverse direction...

9PM MONDAY - Light variable winds - Wind flows may reverse from this afternoon, keeping any smoke/ash around the island and not drifting into the North Island at this stage...

 - WeatherWatch.co.nz

Link to original post: https://www.weatherwatch.co.nz/content/breaking-white-island-whakaari-erupts?fbclid=IwAR0fu0yp3jzy3cNB0yRno4Nbi-EL2O4CbzG7kR2xox40VU4-OVZHEG6CY20

David Harris Ohauiti Weather Station: WH1091 Wireless Weather Station Website: http://www.ohauitiweather.co.nz Powered By: Cumulus MX 3.0.0 b3041 "If it wasn't for the last minute nothing would ever get done"

Whakaari/White Island eruption: an update:

Volcanic Alert BulletinWI – 2019/13
Mon Dec 9 2019 4:25 PM; White Island Volcano
Volcanic Alert Level is lowered to 3
Aviation Colour Code remains at Orange

An eruption occurred at ~14:11 local time as an impulsive, shortlived event and affected the crater floor. Activity appears to have diminished since the eruption.

An eruption has occurred at Whakaari/White Island at ~14:11 local time. We are aware that people were on the island immediately before the eruption and we express our concern for their safety.

Our monitoring data shows that there was a short-lived eruption that generated an ash plume to ~12,000ft above the vent. Ash has covered the main crater floor as seen in our webcam images. Ash fall appears to be confined to the island and we do not expect more than a minor amount of ash to reach East Cape in the coming hours.
Our monitoring equipment is still operating, and we have seen a steady decline in activity since the eruption. There remains significant uncertainty as to future changes but currently, there are no signs of escalation.

The Volcanic Alert Level has decreased to Level 3.

The Aviation Colour Code remains at Orange.

GNS Science and the National Geohazards Monitoring Centre continues to closely monitor Whakaari/White Island for further signs of activity. Volcanic Alert Level 3 indicates a minor local eruption is in progress.

Enquiries related to the emergency response should be directed to National Emergency Management Authority (NEMA – http://www.civildefence.govt.nz)

More information will be made available within the next 24 hours.

Geoff Kilgour

Duty Volcanologist

Media Contact: 07 – 374 8211 or media@gns.cri.nz

David Harris Ohauiti Weather Station: WH1091 Wireless Weather Station Website: http://www.ohauitiweather.co.nz Powered By: Cumulus MX 3.0.0 b3041 "If it wasn't for the last minute nothing would ever get done"