Two Volcanoes Erupt on Same Day, Pilots Told to Take Precautions
Two volcanoes in North America erupted on March 27.
In Mexico, the Popocatepetl Volcano erupted in the morning.
Mexican officials have warned pilots to take precaution. Authorities have also set up a seven and a half mile barrier around the volcano, and have warned people to keep away.
They said proximity to the volcano can risk being hit by falling debris. Officials also warned residents to cover their mouths and noses when going outside.
When Popocatepetl erupted in 2014, plumes of smoke and ash combined with low cloud cover caused travel mayhem at nearby airports when flights had to be cancelled or diverted.
— Colt Snapp (@Colt_Snapp) March 28, 2016
In a previous eruption just a few years before, 40,000 people had to be evacuated from local areas on the advice of government scientists.
Meanwhile, Alaska’s Pavlof Volcano, one of the state’s most active, erupted in the afternoon of March 27.
The U.S. Geological Survey raised the volcano alert level to “Warning,” and said the eruptions led to tremors. Lightning was also detected over Pavlof.
— NOAA Satellites (@NOAASatellites) March 28, 2016
The volcano, which is located 625 miles southwest of Anchorage, produced an ash cloud more than 400 miles into interior Alaska.
The natural phenomenon caused travel disruptions.
Alaska Airlines cancelled 20 flights because of the volcanic ash. A spokeswoman said the cancellations affected about 1,300 travellers heading to rural communities in Alaska including Bethel, Kotzebue, Nome, Barrow and Deadhorse.
— Alaska AVO (@alaska_avo) March 28, 2016
Flights to Anchorage or Fairbanks have not been cancelled as of yet. The FAA has issued an advisory to pilots concerning the volcanic ash.
Geologist Chris Waythomas of the USGS says Pavlof can erupt for hours to days or intermittently for longer periods of time.
When the volcano erupted in 2013, ash plumes rose 27,000 feet, and other eruptions it has reached as high as 49,000 feet, according to the USGS.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.