Ruapehu eruption warning for trampers

NZ Newswire Updated November 16, 2012, 2:43 pm

The Department of Conservation is urging climbers and trampers to stay away from the summit of Mt Ruapehu after warnings the volcano could erupt.

A summit hazard zone - the area within 2km of the centre of Crater Lake - should be avoided, department Ruapehu area manager Jonathon Maxwell said on Friday afternoon.

The warning did not affect nearby Mt Tongariro and the popular Tongariro Alpine Crossing are not affected, but people should be aware of an increased possibility of lahars in streams on the Round the Ruapehu Mountain track.

On Friday morning, GNS Science said pressure was building under Mt Ruapehu and there was an increased chance it will erupt.

The aviation alert level around the central North Island has been raised to yellow - suggesting unrest above background levels - but the volcanic alert level remains unchanged at "signs of unrest".

GNS Science volcanologist Steven Sherburn says the changes make scientists believe eruptions are more likely in the coming weeks to months.

"We are monitoring Ruapehu closely, but it often does not give any immediate warning that it is going to erupt.

"We think that the temperature a few hundred metres beneath Crater Lake is about 800C, but the lake itself is only about 20C. This suggests the vent is partly blocked which may be leading to a pressure build-up beneath Crater Lake.

"A sudden release of the pressure may lead to an eruption."

Since late-October small earthquakes have recorded about 5km beneath Ruapehu's summit, but they may not be directly related to the high temperatures beneath Crater Lake.

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31 Comments

  1. Sheryl06:20pm Friday 16th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Here we go again more tax dollors being wasted in Govt. Dept. butt covering exercise,and the fawns from the media falling allover the utterances of another leach trying to justify his/her huge tax payer supplied income.

    1 Reply
  2. Taxi04:32pm Friday 16th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    I seriously question "did John vote in the last election"?Probably not,so now he has to make political comments on the stste of Mt.Ruapehu.

    Reply
  3. Simon04:24pm Friday 16th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    John I'm a bit confused - God all powerful and a "rabid socialist" why would he let National govern in the first place. Wouldn't it be far easier just to rig the elections. Enlighten me

    Reply
  4. Sipho03:11pm Friday 16th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Ooooohooooohoo!!!

    Reply
  5. Paul03:10pm Friday 16th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    oh my god some people are thick-the mountain erupts once presure builds -has nothing to do with god or man but a little thing called nature-thats why we call it a volcanoe-SIMPL

    Reply
  6. Doom de doom doom02:48pm Friday 16th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Keep taking the happy pills John, we all like a good laugh

    Reply
  7. BOSS02:14pm Friday 16th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Hey John you blame the Nats for all this but why not blame Labour for bringing in all the legislation promoting g*ys an also allowing them to be married!

    Reply
  8. LindaL01:39pm Friday 16th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    To John and all his critics - I wish . . .

    Reply
  9. Piedpiper01:20pm Friday 16th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    So Dave where do you get your information from? Doesnt sound reliable to me and going so far back in time you can't possibly be able to back it up with any logical argument. Where do you people come from NOT this planet that is for real....

    Reply
  10. Chris01:09pm Friday 16th November 2012 ESTReport Abuse

    Thank you yahoo for keeping me in fear all my life and making sure that I keep looking at you web page to find out when the next natural disaster / man made disaster will afflict me instead of just getting on with my life and probably enjoying it.

    Reply

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