Television footage shows lava and smoke after the eruption of the Sakurajima volcano in Kagoshima Prefecture, which erupted at 12:00 p.m. in Lisbon. The volcano, which regularly emits smoke and ash, is one of Japan’s biggest tourist attractions.
The Japan Meteorological Agency said in a statement that Sunday’s eruption spewed ash 2.5 kilometers from the crater, raising the Sakurajima alert level to the fifth level, the maximum, and urging residents to evacuate.
Before the explosion, the warning signal was on the third level, prohibiting access to the mountain. “Residential areas in the cities of Arimura and Forsato, three kilometers from the summit of the Sakurajima volcano, should be on high alert,” the agency said.
According to the city of Kagoshima, 77 residents remained in the two cities. According to public broadcaster NHK, no damage has occurred so far.
Japan has dozens of active volcanoes and is located on the so-called “Ring of Fire” in the Pacific Ocean, where most of the world’s earthquakes and volcanic eruptions are recorded. Sakurajima was once an island, but is now linked to a peninsula due to other volcanic eruptions.
The Asian country issued an evacuation warning when a volcano erupted on the island of Kushinurabu, also in Kagoshima, in 2015.
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