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New rumbling from Chilean volcano worries experts

While scenes of molten lava are relatively commonplace, this otherworldly picture of the Chaiten Volcano in southern Chile shows a truly spectacular, and devastating, volcanic phenomenon.

Chile, S.A.

Chile's Chaiten volcano groaned, rumbled and shuddered on Thursday, raising new concerns among authorities, as lightning bolts pierced the huge clouds of hot ash hovering ominously above its crater. "There's been additional volcanic activity that we're really worried about." Heavy ash kept shooting from the volcano as it generated small tremors. On the ground, heavy flooding hit the area around Chaiten as falling ash swelled rivers, overflowing their banks. The government on Wednesday declared the town of Chaiten, only six miles (10 km) from the erupting volcano, off-limits for three months and reported that about 90 percent of the town had been flooded by the Blanco and Raya Rivers. Rains are normal during the southern hemispheric winter in Patagonia, but the deluge of volcanic ash has caused nearby rivers to breach their banks.

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Chile's Peteroa volcano - Officers from the Regional Emergency Office are planning to install seismometers in the Maule region amid an increase in smoke columns coming from the crater of the Peteroa volcano. The Peteroa volcano is located on the border of Argentina, where it is known as the Azufre volcano. Many glaciers originating from the Claro River also exist within the vicinity. “For now we are asking people to remain calm, since it is very likely that the increased activity is due to the melting of the glaciers near the volcano”. At least 16 smoke columns have been registered lately.

INDIA - The mystery behind the geological eruption at the Murti village in Baramati taluka on Sunday remained unsolved, even as a three-member geologists’ team from Pune visited the place on Wednesday and ruled out any volcanic activity. After inspecting the spot thoroughly, they said, “The eruption is neither a volcano nor an earthquake. Villagers need not worry. Onlookers have stepped on the spot and have destroyed vital clues. We should have visited the spot much earlier. We have taken a few samples of the solidified matter." When asked why the area was not cordoned off to keep it safe from public interference, the police sub-inspector said he had informed the higher authorities about the incidence. Confirming that it was not a natural phenomenon, the DVS secretary said, “The melting of rock-like substances had taken place at the electricity pole. It later solidified in the form of hard matter.” Explaining a possibility, she said since the eruption occurred at the bottom of an iron electricity pole, perhaps it has to do with electricity. The molten lava-like fluid may have taken place due to residual current under the earth surface. According to witnesses, a lava-like substance was oozing out from the six-inch radius hole. A man who was among the first to visit the spot after the eruption said initially there was hot, brown fluid and vapour was continuously coming out. Another man, in whose field the incident took place, said that he saw the eruption of a red-hot fluid. “The government authorities will decide their next course of action after studying the geologists’ report."
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