Volcano Shishaldin erupts in the Aleutian Islands

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A short eruption of a volcano in Alaska’s Aleutian Islands sent an ash cloud soaring into the sky Thursday near a populated area.

Shishaldin Volcano is near the center of Unimak Island, the largest island in the Aleutian chain (Carly Sjordal, KTVF)

AP reports that The Alaska Volcano Observatory announced Shishaldin Volcano erupted for about three minutes at 7:10 a.m. It produced an ash cloud that reached up to 25,000 feet

Shishaldin is one of the most active volcanoes in the Aleutians. According to the observatory, the volcano has had more than 24 confirmed eruptions since 1775. An eruption in 1999 generated an ash column that reached 45,000 feet

According to Janet R. Shaefer, the Chief of Volcanology for the Alaska State Geological Survey, the most dangerous hazards attached to this eruption affect the aviation sector.

“It can cause severe damage to jet engines, so all the air traffic that’s between Dutch Harbor and Anchorage or air traffic out of Cold Bay have to be aware that the volcano is Active. We work with FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) and the weather service to make sure those flight lines don’t pass through direct harm’s way over the some of the Volcano,” said Shaefer.

Shishaldin is near the center of Unimak Island, the largest island in the Aleutian chain, about 645 miles southwest of Anchorage.

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