Volcanoes

Hawaii Officials Warn of Possible Lava Evacuation

Hawaii authorities on Saturday told several dozen residents near an active lava flow to prepare for a possible evacuation in the next three to five days as molten rock oozed across a country road and edged closer to homes. The flow was about 35 yards wide and moving northeast at about 10 yards per hour. Lava of some 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit crossed a road on the edge of Pahoa, the largest town in the mostly rural region of Puna on the Big Island of Hawaii, at 3:

Thousands of undersea volcanoes revealed in new map of ocean floor

Scientists have created the highest resolution map yet of the ocean floor, revealing thousands of underwater mountains and extinct volcanoes that were previously unknown. In a study published Thursday in Science, researchers say the new map is at least twice as accurate as the previous version assembled nearly 20 years ago even though it can only resolve features that are a mile high and bigger. “You might think, that’s not so much better, but instead of seeing 5,000 old volcanoes down there, now we can see 10,000,” said David Sandwell, a geophysics professor at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego who led the study.

Could Mt. Fuji be the next volcano to erupt in Japan?

The sudden eruption of Mount Ontake over the weekend, which is believed to have killed dozens of people, was a reminder of Japan’s vulnerability to its many active volcanoes. Gas continued to pour from the ruptured crater Monday as emergency workers tried to reach the bodies of hikers trapped on the peak when it roared into life. Ontake is one of 110 live volcanoes dotted throughout the seismically-active country, including Mount Fuji, the country’s tallest mountain and a UNESCO World Heritage Site that welcomes some 300,000 climbers each year.