White Island volcanic alert level lowered

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White Island, off the Bay of Plenty coast. Photo/file
White Island, off the Bay of Plenty coast. Photo/file

The volcanic alert level for White Island has been lowered from three to two.

This level indicates that the volcano is not erupting anymore but remains in a state of moderate to heightened unrest.

Last night an eruption occurred at White Island, an island off the coast of the Bay of Plenty. The eruption was accompanied by a moderately elevated seismic activity, GNS said.

There has been no further eruptive activity since yesterday night and seismic activity remained low.

GNS volcanologists flew over White Island this afternoon to asses the impacts of last night's eruption.

They saw a dark-green ash deposit from the eruption, which covered at least 80 per cent of the floor of the main crater and up the sides of the crater wall on both the north and south sides.

At a distance of 500 metres from the eruption site the ash deposit is about 5mm thick.
The green colour is due to minerals in the ash, GNS said.

There was no indication that activity may be building up at White Island, however, GNS staff would not be visiting the main crater floor until further notice due to the heightened state of volcanic unrest.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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