White Island keeps rocking

STACEY KIRK
Last updated 14:24 29/01/2013

Relevant offers

National

Wild night of gales and downpours as 'mixed bag' of weather hits NZ Man stabbed in chest in Auckland Lorna Mohi-Roberts and four lost children dug cave, survived on ferns in Urewera bush ordeal Search for missing Upper Hutt woman Mary Berrington moves to Hutt River RIMPAC soldiers test out Australia's latest naval capabilities Wild weather closes roads and sends trampolines flying around Wellington Police say truckies not great drivers, either Jonathan Milne: Killer Tania Shailer's bid to shift blame to Moko provokes real anger A Lotto First Division win, a house fire, and an engagement - all on her birthday One person seriously injured in Auckland crash

Rocks and mud are being thrown from the White Island crater as tremors within the volcano continue.

GNS Science vulcanologist Brad Scott said a visit to New Zealand's most active volcano this morning registered slightly less-frequent tremors, but the tremors were still relatively strong.

"Early this morning the continuous volcanic tremor which has been recorded during the [past] few weeks at White Island has changed to a pattern of intermittent tremor," Scott said.

"When occurring, the volcanic tremor remains strong.

"The current level of unrest means that there is a greater-than-usual hazard to visitors." The visit revealed the crater lake was drying out and the frequent bursts of mud, steam and gas were still being shot at least several tens of metres out from the lake area.

Steam and gas clouds above the volcano could be seen from the Bay of Plenty coastline.

Shifting magma within the White Island crater prompted an upgrade to the mountain's aviation alert code to orange last week.

White Island was still at an elevated level of unrest but Scott said the amount of gas being ejected from the crater did not necessarily suggest a large eruption was imminent.

"GNS Science's past monitoring of the island shows that weak ash eruptions have often followed drying out of this type of mud-filled lake," he said.

"More vigorous explosions of mud, rock and perhaps molten sulphur are possible in future with little or no warning."

Ad Feedback

- Stuff

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content