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April 25, 2015

V is for Volcanic Eruption


My theme for my 2015 A to Z Challenge came from my Disaster Crimes series. Disasters are a theme in each story, so it got me thinking about all the disasters that occur from natural disasters to manmade disasters.

Today’s disaster is...
VOLCANIC ERUPTION

This is a fitting one for today since a volcano erupted in Chile on Wednesday and is still erupting. This is the first time it has erupted in over 42 years.

A volcano is a naturally occurring rupture in the Earth’s crust, generally found near plate tectonics, where lava, volcanic ash, and gases escape from a magma chamber below the surface. Some volcanoes are classified as extinct or dormant. Extinct volcanoes are considered unlikely to erupt again. Dormant volcanoes are quiet but may become active in the future.

FACT: 90% of the world’s earthquakes are located in the Ring of Fire.

Sometimes volcanoes erupt (either by exploding or releasing slow flows of lava) and cause many dangers to humans, animals, and plants. They can emit steam, high-silica lava, low-silica lava, pyroclastic flows, debris flows (lahars), and carbon dioxide.

FACT: Lava is molten rock. The levels of silica in lava determine how “sticky” and thick the lava is. When lava is underground it is called magma.

Rocks torn apart by a violent eruption can be shot into the air with lava. These rocks are called pyroclastic rocks. They fall back to earth as ash or bombs. (If you’ve seen the movie Volcano with Tommy Lee Jones, you’ll remember the lava bombs.)

Pyroclastic flows are fast-moving clouds of hot gas and rock/ash/dust. They can reach speeds up to 450 mph and the gas can reach temperatures as high as 1,830 degrees Fahrenheit. Their volume can be anywhere from a few hundred cubic meters to over a thousand kilometers. These flows destroy everything in its path, buries sites, and burns forests and buildings. The rocks inside the flow can be as big as boulders. People and animals caught inside a pyroclastic flow can die from burns or inhaling hot ash and gas.

As of 2013, these are the most active volcanoes on Earth:
1. KÄ«lauea in Hawaii has been in continuous eruption since 1983.
2. Mount Etna and Stromboli, in the Mediterranean, have been in "almost continuous eruption" since before the Middle Ages.
3. Mount Yasur, in Vanuatu, has been erupting for over 800 years.


QUESTIONS:
Have you ever seen a volcano? Even a dormant one? What are your favorite volcano movies? I like Dante’s Peak and Volcano.



96 comments:

nashvillecats2 said...

I certainly wouldn't like to be caught up in one of those.
Wonderful post and as usual most informative.

Enjoy your week-end.
Yvonne.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Fortunately I've never seen one.
I'd pick Dante's Peak over Volcano. Although Volcano had a great tagline with 'The coast is toast.'

Jennifer Hawes said...

I used to teach all about volcanoes when I was a teacher:) Haven't seen one, but they are fascinating.

Chrys Fey said...

Thanks, Yvonne! Enjoy your weekend too. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Dante's Peak was a lot more realistic than Volcano, but I still enjoy that movie for the drama.

Chrys Fey said...

I loved learning about volcanoes when I was a kid in school. :)

Jo said...

Pretty terrifying. What surprises me, people live close to volcanoes, get driven away and then go back again. They are nuts. There were pics this morning of the one in Chile. People trying to shovel the ash away. They are expecting rain which means the ash will become rock hard like concrete.

Chrys Fey said...

I guess when you call a place home, it stays your home even after a volcanic eruption.

Pat Hatt said...

Never seen one in real life, thankfully. Don't want to get melted lol both those movies are good picks.

CA Heaven said...

The ring of fire is cool. Part of the proof of plate tectonics.

I've never seen an errupting volcano, only some dormant ones, on Iceland, and the Mount Vesuvius in Italy. A couple of years ago I visit the excavated ancient Roman city Pompeii which was buried by an erruption from the Vesuvius about 2100 years ago. Very interesting >:)

Cold As Heaven

Chrys Fey said...

I wouldn't mind seeing a dormant one.

I'm glad you liked my movie picks. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I'd love to see a dormant one and I'd be praying it doesn't become active while I'm there. :P

That would've been something to see.

CA Heaven said...

The low-silica volcanoes are not too dangerous. They flow slow and steady. The high-silica volcanos are explosive, due to the high viscocity of the silica. It's like boiling gravy compared to boiling water >:)

diedre Knight said...

I've seen the one in Hawaii in action. Sure is beautiful at night. The one that really sticks in my mind is when Mount Tamboro erupted in Indonesia; it lasted three months and totally wiped out summer that year (1815).

jaybird said...

Even though I am a big fat chicken, I hiked Kilauea in Hawaii, and took a helicopter ride over the active volcano. Of course, both of those things were The Huband's ideas, and NOT mine. But it was quite an awesome sight to see. Nothing really compares to seeing that lava shoot out of the top of the volcano. It's crazy!!

Chrys Fey said...

I gathered that through my research. :) But you never know what kind of lava you'll get until the volcano erupts.

Chrys Fey said...

Really? That would've been something to see.

Volcano eruptions can last a very long time.

Chrys Fey said...

You hiked Kilauea? Wow! That is awesome! Although I'm afraid of heights, I'd love to take a helicopter ride over one.

S. L. Hennessy said...

You've just hit on one of my greatest fears. I know there are several past due to erupt that could wipe us out. NOT OKAY>

Good luck with the A to Z Challenge!
A to Z Co-Host S. L. Hennessy
http://pensuasion.blogspot.com/

Annalisa Crawford said...

I didn't realise there are volcanoes continually erupting - 800 years is impressive!

Annalisa, writing A-Z vignettes, at Wake Up, Eat, Write, Sleep

Beverly Stowe McClure said...

I haven't seen a volcano, but they sure look scary and can cause a lot of damage. I just saw something on TV about Yellowstone Park. I think they said under it is a volcano that's constantly erupting. The steam people see at the park. I could be wrong about this. Does anyone know?

J.H. Moncrieff said...

I almost got to see one this spring in Maui, but the rains were too bad, unfortunately. I was really disappointed.

I'd love to see one.

Nick Wilford said...

Edinburgh Castle is built on an extinct volcano so I've seen it a lot. I don't think that's likely to go off any time soon. What's bad is people living on the side of an active volcano knowing it could erupt at any time - often, due to poverty, they have no choice but to live there.

Jay Noel said...

My youngest son is obsessed with volcanoes right now. Probably from a book he got from the library. There's a guy from town who happened to be in Chile when that big volcano erupted last week.

CA Heaven said...

Usually scientist can predict what kind of lava you will get, from the shape of the mountain and the tectonic setting. Shield volcano erruptions arr slow and smooth. Stratocones are explosive. Also, areas with seafloor spreading (Iceland ) gives low-silica eruptions. Cool, isn't it?

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I saw Mt. St, Helens erupt in July 1980. We'd gone to Portland to see the dog races and she just happened to blow that day. We stopped and got pictures. Once we arrived at the races, we realized the grandstand faced the mountain, and we spent the whole time watching it go.

Stephanie Bird said...

Good grief. Pyroclastic Flow is truly frightening. Yes, I visited a dormant volcano in Hawaii. The only thing enjoyable to me about volcanoes is the Pele mythology.

Jeffrey Scott said...

I've never visited a volcano, but some day I'd like to. Another example of natures power and beauty. I love watching lava flow.

Lisa Thomson said...

This will sound funny but I loved 'The Secret life of Walter Mitty'. It was a fantasy adventure, weird ass movie. There was a scene where the volcano is about to erupt and everyone has to evacuate. I think that part takes place in Iceland. Interesting scientific facts shared, Chrys!

I've been to the historic city of Pompeii and toured the ancient ruins. It was pretty incredible.

Chrys Fey said...

Well now that I didn't know. I guess I'll have to research what type volcano it is and what type of lava it would have if I ever am able to see one.

Chrys Fey said...

Not okay at all.

Chrys Fey said...

I didn't realize that either.

Chrys Fey said...

There's a volcano under Yellowstone Park? I didn't know that. Hopefully someone will read you comment and confirm.

Chrys Fey said...

I'd love to see one too. Too bad you weren't able to. Stupid, rain! :P

Chrys Fey said...

They sure as crazy to live near an active volcano! Sad that they have no other choice, though.

Chrys Fey said...

Really? I bet he has awesome stories to tell.

Chrys Fey said...

That would've been neat! And a little frightening. I'd love to see those pictures. :)

Chrys Fey said...

The pyroclastic flow is the worst part of an eruption in my opinion.

I'll have to look up the Pele mythology.

Chrys Fey said...

The lava would be neat to watch...from a distance. lol

Chrys Fey said...

I've never seen that movie.

Gosh, it seems that everyone has traveled who comment on my blog. I am jealous!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Chrys ... I haven't been to Pompeii!! But I'd hate to be involved in a volcanic eruption - however Pompeii must be amazing to visit .. cheers Hilary

J E Oneil said...

I definitely want to be as far away from volcanoes as possible. I wonder what it's like living next to one that's "continuously erupting".

Birgit said...

I have, thankfully, never been near a volcano that is ready to blow. My friend has been in an airplane and had to turn back due to the volcano spewing. I remember Mt. St. Helen's and listening to Harry Truman ( not the ex pres) say he will not leave his home and he died in the explosion. I watched a great docudrama-more documentary than drama about Krakatoa. I was enthralled by that film and want to get this on DVD

Jeffrey Scott said...

From a distance, yes. Visions of Anakin dancing in my head. Not good.

sage said...

As a kid, I wanted to be a volcanologist... I have seen dormant volcanoes in the American West and Japan as well as active ones in Central America and Indonesia. Btw, I think your photo of Pompeii is actually the Mexican volcano Paricutin. Pompeii was an Italian city destroyed by Mt. Vesuvius in 70 AD, Paricutin is a "new volcano" that popped up in a guy's cornfield in the 1940s. (does this make me a volcano geek?)

sage said...

If you are interested in studying volcanoes for the purpose of writing, you might check out some of Simon Winchester's books--he is a geologist and an excellent non-fiction author. I would recommend "Krakatoa" (about the largest eruption of a volcano in the "human era" that occurred in the late 19th Century in Indonesia). I some of his other books talk about volcanoes and plate-tectonics, etc, such as "Atlantic" and "A Crack at the Edge of the World"

Mary Kirkland said...

I would not want to be anywhere near one of these eruptions.

Chrys Fey said...

I think it would be amazing to visit.

Chrys Fey said...

I'd be in a constant state of panic. lol

Chrys Fey said...

Yikes. Yes, that's not something you want to fly through.

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you for the recommendation! I won't be writing about volcanoes for my series, but I have always been fascinated by them.

And about that photo...it said Pompeii on the site, but it probably is the volcano you say it is.

Chrys Fey said...

Nor would I.

Sarah Foster said...

Never seen a volcano. Actually, I don't think I've seen a volcano movie, either...

Anonymous said...

Volcanoes are crazy. Luckily I live super far away from anything that's spewing molten lava. :)

Chrys Fey said...

You should really watch Dante's Peak then.

Chrys Fey said...

So do I. :)

betty said...

I liked Dante's Peak too. When we lived in Montana, the first month we were there, it snowed 10 inches on my son's birthday. We had moved from Santa Fe New Mexico where they close the schools at the mention of snow, LOL, so when I walked son into school I asked the secretary what number I called to see if school was canceled or not. She just LAUGHED and said in her 18 years of working for the school district the schools had only closed twice, once when it was -20 and the busses couldn't start and the other time was when they got the ash from Mount Saint Helen after it erupted.

betty

Sunni said...

I've been to the volcano in HA. We drove up and then hiked in.

I was on the other side of the harbor when one erupted in Alaska in the 1970's. We were several hundred miles away and could see the plume of smoke. Everything where we were was covered in ash for days.

I live near two dormant volcanoes now and am surrounded by old lava flows. It's fascinating stuff and so pretty now with desert plants growing in it. Some of the stacks are clear over my head. I can hike back in them, but have to watch for coyotes and other things that live there in some of the hollows.

Sunni
http://sunni-survivinglife.blogspot.com/

Chrys Fey said...

That's a cool story. But I sure wouldn't want to deal with the aftermath of a volcano eruption. Even places miles away get hit with ash etc.

Chrys Fey said...

Wow! You're the second person to say they've seen a volcano erupt. And here I thought it was a rare thing. And you leave near two dormant volcanoes? That is cool.

Empty Nest Insider said...

We saw the ancient ruins in Pompeii a few years ago. It's amazing to see what's still intact after all these years.

Julie

Anonymous said...

When I was younger, we went to Hawaii and saw a few of the volcanos. The active one we saw during the day, so we couldn't see the lava well.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

My sister lives in Washington state. She sent us all trinkets made of ash. My husband and I visited Hawaii so we were pretty much walking around on volcanoes the entire time.

Liz A. said...

We went to Mount St. Helens in 1987. They didn't allow you to get too close to the peak, but you could still see the fallen trees and all the destruction around the area. And that stuff was beginning to grow back.

Elizabeth Mueller said...

I've never seen a volcano only in the movies! My fave movie would be the recent Pompeii one, though I didn't want anyone to die in it. x)

Elizabeth Mueller
AtoZ 2015
My Little Pony

Carrie-Anne said...

I was considering moving to Portland at one point, since they have a really good master's program in Russian studies, but my ex was terrified by the idea of living "so close" to Mount St. Helen's. He's terrified of life, and a small chance of a natural disaster becomes an automatic ticking time bomb in his mind.

The Italian branch of my family tree came from a small town near Mount Vesuvius. I've always wondered if they were living there at the time of its most famous eruption, and what their respective fates were.

Tamara Narayan said...

I liked Dante's Peak too. The only volcanos I've experienced involved vinegar, baking soda, and red food coloring. I hope it stays that way.

Barbara In Caneyhead said...

Love, love, love the look of your new short story! No, I have never seen a volcano. My favorite volcano movie is Joe verses the Volcano.
Visit me at: Life & Faith in Caneyhead
I am Ensign B of Tremps' Troops
with the A to Z Challenge

Shell Flower said...

Depending on how close you are, volcanoes can be deadly. I didn't live in WA state when Mt. St. Helens erupted, but I have been up there to the visitor center several years ago and seen the crater. My son was about 5 when we went there and they show a movie about the eruption. To me it was all science and history, but later he was scared to death of volcanoes for a awhile. Poor thing. My friends that grew up here all remember the ash several feet deep and how it was dark for days. It really messed with car engines, too.

D.G. Hudson said...

No, this is one disaster I haven't experienced and I'm glad I haven't. When Mt St Helen's blew, we were in Georgia on a holiday and I worried at how it would affect Vancouver. Pompeii is a scary reminder of the worst scenario. . .

Denise said...

Volcanoes fascinated me as a child. I eventually got to Pompeii to see the ruins. When I visited Mt. Rainier, they had signs showing the route to drive if the volcano erupted. Oh, gee, NOT on my bucket list is out-running a volcano. Then again, I guess it would be a no-brainer add-on.

Stephanie Faris said...

Volcanoes are pretty darn scary! I remember thinking during all of those volcano disaster movies of the 90s that there should be ways to know well in advance that a volcano is going to erupt.

anne stenhouse said...

I have been at the base of Stromboli in the Mediterranean. Close as I'd like to get, too. Some spectacular pictures, Chrys. Good luck with the new book. anne Stenhouse, novels now

Chrys Fey said...

I'd love to see that.

Chrys Fey said...

How luck that you went to Hawaii and saw some volcanoes. :)

Chrys Fey said...

Trinkets made of ash sound neat. I want one! ;)

Chrys Fey said...

Its amazing that nature can grow back after such a disaster.

Chrys Fey said...

I haven't seen any recent volcano movies. I'll have to do some research on that.

Chrys Fey said...

Your ex sounds like a big ole scaredy cat. :P

That's some cool family history.

Chrys Fey said...

I've never even made a volcano for an experiment. I should do that with my nephews. :D

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you, Barbara! :)

I've never seen Joe Verses the Volcano.

Chrys Fey said...

Oh, yes, they sure can be deadly.

Aw! Poor thing is right. :(

Chrys Fey said...

Pompeii was horrible.

Chrys Fey said...

They fascinated me too. Still do, in fact. :)

Chrys Fey said...

I guess it can be spontaneous, but there usually are signs to tell if a volcano is acting up.

Chrys Fey said...

Thank you, Anne! :D

Sean @ His And Her Hobbies said...

I have been to several extinct ones in Australia and a active one in Nicaragua. It was smoking when we were there but no lava. My favourite volcano movie was Dante's Peak.

Sean at His and Her Hobbies

Scribbles From Jenn said...

I visited on the island of Hilo and learned all about Pele, the goddess of volcanoes. Love Dante's Peak.

Scribbles From Jenn - Visiting from the A to Z Challenge

Anonymous said...

I feel like Dante's Peak and Volcano are the only two we have lol. I love them both. We watched a documentary about Mount St. Helen's when I was in grade school. There was a little old man who lived near it and refused to move. Of course he wasn't found after it erupted.

Chrys Fey said...

Dante's Peak was very good.

Chrys Fey said...

I've learned a little about Pele. I should learn more.

Chrys Fey said...

Ha! They might be. I was just thinking that.

That's sad. :(

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I'll add one to my next post.

Chrys Fey said...

Awesome! :D

Tasha Duncan-Drake said...

I think Pyroclastic Flows are one of the scariest things ever because they move so fast. I've never seen a real volcano - not been to the right part of the word.
Tasha
Tasha's Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

Chrys Fey said...

Pyroclastic flows scare me more than the actual eruption.