We can now start to summarize the plinian eruption of Kelud that lasted 3 hours; even though the volcano is still smoking the eruption is now for all points and purposes over.
We know that the eruption column was slightly higher than 20 kilometers and 254 kilometers away it deposited a 1 centimeter thick ash layer in Yogyakarta, even though the city was only hit by the outskirts of the ash cloud.
From the Thorarinson model of ash dispersal and the columnal height we can say that the eruption was a VEI-4, something that is also confirmed by local scientists who claim that the eruption was more powerful than the 1990 VEI-4. As such it is the third VEI-4 eruption of the decade. It was though most likely smaller than the 2011 Grimsvötn eruption.
Due to good work performed by the Indonesian volcanologists the eruption was tracked well in advance, the evacuation planning worked better than expected, and the locals acted well on the warnings. As the eruption occurred almost all of the 100 000 people within the 5km initial evacuation zone had left, and as the 10 km evacuation zone was declared just before onset of the eruption many sought shelter or fled.
Also the removal of the Crater Lake through the construction of a tunnel removed the threat of deadly Lahars. During the deadliest known eruption the same volcano killed 6 000 people, but through meticulous planning, good scientific work and ground-breaking volcano-engineering that number has been diminished to 2 confirmed deaths as I write this. Most likely that number will increase over the next couple of days, but something tells me that the number will be lower than the 1990 number of 32 deaths.
Sissel is still in the lead, but Cryphia made great strides and took the second position closely followed by Dorkviking in this Olympian competition of arcane volcano knowledge. This week there are 3 volcanoes, 1 volcanologist and one volcanic term. Good luck!
- Haggard + Image – Marioin Island (Sissel, 2pt) The rusty shovel on the image is a “Marion” steam shovel, and H. Rider Haggard is the writer of the 1929 novel “Mary of Marion Isle”.
- Crusty sapfian lover – Dyke (Kelda, 2pt)
- Well travelled cubic building – Mount Kaba (Spica, 2pt) After the famous building.
- Tasty nutty tree poet – Professor Hazel Rymer (Sissel, 2pt)
- Home of the gigantically shrunken climbing equipment – The Pitons, Gros Piton and Petit Piton, Saint Lucia (Evan Chugg, 2pt)
6 Evan Chugg