Volcano eruption on Russia’s Kamchatka spews vast ash clouds


MOSCOW (AP) – A volcano erupted early Tuesday on far eastern Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula, spewing clouds of dust 20 kilometers (65,600 feet) into the sky and covering broad areas with ash.

The ash cloud from the eruption of Shiveluch, one of Kamchatka’s most active volcanoes, extended over 500 kilometers (more than 300 miles) northwest and engulfed several villages in grey volcanic dust.

Officials closed the skies over the area to aircraft. Local authorities advised residents to stay indoors. Schools in several affected communities were shut, and two villages had their power supplies cut.

Ash fell on 108,000 square kilometers (41,699 square miles) of territory, according to the regional branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences Geophysical Survey. The scientists described the fallout as the biggest in nearly 60 years.

The Kamchatka Peninsula, which extends into the Pacific Ocean about 6,600 kilometers (4,000 miles) east of Moscow, is one of the world’s most concentrated area of geothermal activity, with about 30 active volcanoes.


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