Alaska’s Mount Redoubt erupts

The U.S. Geological Survey says Alaska's Mount Redoubt has started erupting.
Mount Redoubt, a volcano in southern Alaska, began erupting late Sunday, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

The eruption, starting about 11:38 p.m. Sunday local time (2:38 a.m. Monday EDT), was obscured by darkness and snow. But the initial height of the eruption cloud was estimated at less than 20,000 feet above sea level, the USGS said. With the eruption, mudflows were possible on the Drift and Crescent Rivers, and ashfall was likely near and downwind from the volcano, the USGS said. Earlier Sunday in Alaska, researchers had raised the monitoring status for the volcano, which was showing increased seismic activity. “It is possible for unrest at the volcano to change rapidly, and seismic activity or other signs of unrest could escalate culminating in an eruption within days to weeks,” a statement said at the time.

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Bill Burton, a geologist with the U.S. Geological Survey, said that, since January, there have been increases in seismic activity at Mount Redoubt followed by periods of quiet. The 10,197-foot peak is about 100 miles southwest of Anchorage, the most populous city in Alaska.