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White Island volcano threat lowered for first time since deadly eruption

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

The threat level for the New Zealand volcano which killed 21 people last December has been lowered for the first time since the deadly eruption.

The threat level for the New Zealand volcano which killed 21 people last December has been lowered for the first time since the deadly eruption.

Today, volcanologists at GNS Science placed Whakaari, also known as White Island, at alert level one, signalling minor volcanic unrest.

"Observations and monitoring data over the last few months indicate that Whakaari/White Island has been progressing on a gradual trend back to lower levels of unrest that are typical of the long-term behaviour of this volcano," Dr Steven Sherburn said.

The White Island volcano in New Zealand.

Volcanoes are notoriously difficult to monitor, and Dr Sherburn said "an eruption should still occur with little or no advanced warning".

White Island joins Ruapehu, a volcano in North Island's Tonagariro National Park used for snow sports during the ski season, on level one.

The rest of New Zealand's monitored volcanoes are at alert level zero, signifying no volcanic unrest.

When the White Island volcano erupted, several tourists died as thick plumes of smoke and magma exploded out of the volcano on December 9.

New Zealand lies on the seismically active "Ring of Fire", a 40,000km arc of volcanoes around the Pacific Ocean.

Among the 21 people who died in last December's eruption were 14 Australians.

Source: 9News https://www.9news.com.au/world/white-island-volcano-eruption-threat-level-lowered-since-fatal-december-blast/e8216324-7882-4e30-87d4-f174a9762130

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