SCIENCE

Alert Levels Raised As Alaska's Pavlof Volcano Spews Ash 20,000 Feet Into The Sky

Smoke started spurting at 4:18 p.m. local time on Sunday.

An erupting volcano in Alaska sent ash spurting 20,000 feet into the sky on Sunday.

The Pavlof volcano, located on the Aleutian Islands, began violently coughing up the plume at 4:18 p.m. local time. The smoke blew northward.

The Alaska Volcano Observatory raised its volcano alert level to "warning" and its aviation alert level to "red" following the eruption. Both levels remain there as of Monday morning.

Colt Snapp captured this stunning photograph of the plume from a Penair airplane at 7 p.m. as he was flying back to Anchorage from Dutch Harbor, reports CNN. "No delays or problems, pilot made purpose to get as close as possible to let everyone get great look at it," he posted on Twitter.

There have been no reports of evacuations or commercial flights being disrupted because of the eruption.

Pavlof is 4.4 miles in diameter and its highest point stands 8,261 feet above sea level. The volcano is 600 miles southwest of the state's most populous city, Anchorage.

"With over 40 historic eruptions, it is one of the most consistently active volcanoes in the Aleutian arc," the Alaska Volcano Observatory posted on its website.

The volcano last erupted in November 2014. Previous eruptions have sent ash plumes soaring 49,000 feet into the air, according to The Associated Press.

Pavlof began violently coughing up the plume at 4:18 p.m. local time. This image of the ash cloud was taken at 4:58 p.m.
Pavlof began violently coughing up the plume at 4:18 p.m. local time. This image of the ash cloud was taken at 4:58 p.m.
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