Northern Mariana Islands Recent Status Report, Updates, and Information Releases
Report prepared by the U.S. Geological Survey.
PAGAN VOLCANO (CAVW #0804-17=)
18°7'48" N 145°48' E, Summit Elevation 1870 ft (570 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: ADVISORY
Current Aviation Color Code: YELLOW
A constant gas and water vapor plume from Pagan was visible in satellite images over the past week. This is typical of recent months of observation of Pagan. An ash alert was issued by the VAAC on May 14, 2013; however, as stated in the alert, no ash was identifiable on the MetSat image. The gas/vapor plume from Pagan on this day appeared more robust and extended further downwind than is typical. The hydrothermal system beneath Pagan may have responded to the M6.8 tectonic earthquake that occurred that day about 75 km to the northwest and ~600 km deep.
Because of this ongoing emission of volcanic gas from Pagan, it remains possible that residents of the CNMI may notice sulfurous odors under certain wind conditions. Additional information about volcanic gas and vog can be found online at this address: http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/hazards/FAQ_SO2-Vog-Ash/main.html
Pagan Volcano is not monitored with ground-based geophysical instrumentation and the only sources of information are satellite observations and occasional reports from observers who pass by or visit the island. We will continue to evaluate satellite imagery, on-island, and mariner reports when they become available, but because the volcano is not monitored with ground-based instruments, we cannot provide advanced warning of activity.
Access to the island may be restricted by the CNMI government. Contact the EMO for the latest information.
No eruptive activity or significant unrest was detected at other volcanoes in Northern Mariana Islands this week.
USGS Northern Marianas Duty Scientist (808) 967-8815
CNMI Emergency Management Office (670) 322-8001