Japan Volcano Forces over 1,000 Evacuations

A newly active Japan volcano has prompted officials to evacuate over 1,000 people living on the country’s southern island, news sources reported Monday.

Shinmoedake, a 4,662-foot peak in the Kirishima range on the southern Japan island of Kyushu, erupted last Thursday after 52 years of dormancy. Smoke plumes rose over 6,500 feet, and local residents were evacuated as a precaution. No injuries were reported.

On Monday, the volcano was still expelling a magnificent ash-cloud, coating local vegetable farms and disrupting airline flights, Reuters reports.

Authorities issued an evacuation advisory a 11:50 p.m. on Sunday (1450 GMT). About 1,100 residents in the town of Takaharu fled to evacuation centers, although many chose to remain in their homes.

According to The Associated Press, experts said a dome of lava was swelling inside the volcano. It is still unclear whether the dome will grow enough to spill over the crest and send searing lava down the mountainsides.

It has been nearly 300 years since Shinmoedake has been this active, Reuters reported Monday.

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