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Nine major volcanic eruptions resulted in major deaths (three of them)

2019-12-10  |   Editor : houxue2018  

Volcanic eruptions are frightening and terrifying because they can kill people in so many ways - choking ash, flowing lava, floods, landslides, mudslides, burning natural gas, shock waves, earthquakes and tsunamis caused by drainage of dyke-breaking lakes. Even if it's not a sudden volcano, also it is deadly.《Wired》 magazine reported several major volcanic eruptions that caused major deaths.

The eruption of Mount St. Helens in 1980

Mount St. Helens erupted on May 18, 1980, which was the largest volcanic eruption in the history of the United States with the largest number of casualties and the worst economic damage (the 1912 Katmai volcano eruption in Alaska was the largest volcanic eruption in the history of the United States). The eruption of Mount St. Helens killed 57 people, including volcanologist David Johnston, who was observing the eruption. The eruption also destroyed 250 homes, 47 Bridges, 24km of railways and 300km of expressways. The eruption of ash and debris reached 2.3 km³, leveling vegetation and buildings in the vicinity of 600 k㎡, the largest in recorded history. The collapse of the Northern Slope of the mountain mixed ice, snow and water to form volcanic mud flows. Mudslides have moved thousands of meters along the Toutle and Cowlitz Rivers, destroying Bridges and logging grounds along the way. A total of 3 million m³ of material was transported by mudslides to the Columbia River 27km to the south. The explosion was triggered in part by a huge landslide, which rapidly lowered the pressure of volatile-rich magma.

1991 Pinatubo volcano eruption

On June 9, 1991, after more than 600 years of silence, Pinatubo volcano, located in Luzon Island, Philippines, erupted violently at an altitude of 1436 m, ejecting lava of about 4.9 km³. Ash, sand, rock and steam from the volcano shot up to 32km into the sky. In two weeks, more than 700 casualties and more than 200,000 people fled their homes, resulting in losses of 5 billion pesos. A 5 cm thick layer of volcanic ash was formed when flying ash fell everywhere, covering nearly 4,000 k㎡ of land, resulting in 3,000 k㎡ of farmland no harvest, 70 k㎡ of forest destroyed in a moment. Volcanic ash has even fallen far into Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and Hainan, Fujian province and Taiwan, etc.

Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 AD

Vesuvius is one of the most famous volcanoes in Italy and even the world, located in the southeast of Naples with an altitude of 1281 m. Its most famous eruption was a massive eruption on August 24, 79 A.D, the hot pyroclastic flows destroyed the richest city with a population of 20000, Pompeii, at that time, several other famous coastal cities, such as Hekuranim and Stabia, were also severely damaged, resulting in at least 3,360 deaths, possibly as many as 16,000 deaths. The volcano spewed black clouds of smoke, the blazing ashstone rained down, and toxic gases poured into the air. Only a quarter of Pompeii's residents survived, and the rest were either buried in volcanic ash, asphyxiated by smoke or crushed to death by collapsed buildings.

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