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Calbuco Volcano In Chile Erupts Spewing Giant Plume Of Ash

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The Calbuco volcano in southern Chile has recently erupted spewing giant plumes of ash in the sky. The stratovolcano that is located southeast of Llanquihue Lake in the Los Lagos Region has erupted after more than 40 years.

On Wednesday, April 22, the volcano erupted and spewed ash about 10 kilometers (km), or 6 miles, in the sky, which prompted authorities to declare a state of emergency. Calbuco volcano has erupted at least 10 times since 1837 and the last eruption was in 1972.

Officials have announced an evacuation in the 20 km radius region that surrounds the volcano. More than 3,500 people have already been evacuated. Emergency measures has also been taken in Argentina's city of Bariloche, which is about 100 km away from the volcano, in anticipation of the impending arrival of ash clouds. People in the Argentinian city have been advised to stay back at home.

Puerto Montt, a city in Chile, which is near to the volcano, is already covered with ash clouds. Gervoy Paredes, the mayor of the city, revealed that people are quite frightened due to the sudden arrival of the ash clouds.

Several airlines have cancelled flights and schools have also been suspended in the region as a precautionary measure. Local television images reveal massive traffic jams as well as long queues at gas station located in Puerto Montt.

"I would like to call on the population to remain calm and stay informed," says Rodrigo Penailillo, Interior Minister. "The police have given orders and begun to evacuate."

Authorities suggest that the latest volcano eruption has not shown any signs of lava or hot rocks. Authorities have not also received any reports of deaths or missing person due to the volcano eruption.

Standing at 2,000-meter, or 6,500-foot, high, the volcano is supposed to be one of the most dangerous volcanoes in Chile, which has about 90 active volcanos.

The eruption of Calbuco volcano is the second in Chile this year. In early March, the Villarrica volcano in the city of Villarrica erupted that prompted authorities to evacuate thousands of people. The volcano last erupted in 1971.

Photo: Nicolas Binder | Flickr

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