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Earth Happenings Archive
October 1, 1997 to October 31, 1997
October 31, 1997
The Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO) reports increased fumarolic activity on Chiginagak Volcano on the Alaska Peninsula (AVO Report). Since October 22, there have been local reports of 'increased steaming, snow-melt, and sulfur smell' and AVO states that this activity 'may reflect an increased heat flux at the volcano'.
October 28, 1997
Northern Peru experienced a mag. 6.5 quake. The shaking caused by the moderately deep quake lastest 40 to 50 seconds but only minor damages were reported (CNN).
*A magnitude 4.4 quake shook eastern Canada.
*Seismic activity at Montserrat has increased today (MVO 10/28 report). Since October 22nd a new volcanic dome has rapidly grown and now fills half the volcanic crater (MVO 10/26 report and Volcano World). Further eruptions and pyroclastic flows caused by the collapse of the new lava dome are likely in the near future.
October 26, 1997
A mag. 5.7 earthquake occurred in the Philippines. No damage was reported.
October 24, 1997
Two weeks of torrential rains, blamed on El Nino, have resulted in severe flooding in South America. Floods in Brazil have left over 20,000 people homeless (CNN).
*A magnitude 4.9 quake startled people in southern Alabama today (Reuters).
October 23, 1997
The continuous series of volcanic explosions that have been occurring on Monserrat since September 22 appear to have stopped (MVO Report).
*Indonesia was shaken by a magnitude 5.8 quake (Reuters).
October 21, 1997
Flash flooding in Kenya drowned at least 23 people while leaving neighborhoods under water and delaying flights in Mombasa (Washington Post/AP).
October 20, 1997
A magnitude 5.6 earthquake struck southern Iran with no reported injuries or damage.
October 19, 1997
Floods killed 13 in Israel, 6 in Egypt and Jordan (Washington Post/AP).
*A mudslide left 9 dead in Mombasa, Kenya (Washington Post/AP).
*Two small earthquakes occurred in Italy, a 4.1 in Umbria (CNN/Reuters) and a 3.5 under Mount Etna (Nando Times).
October 18, 1997
A 5.5 quake shook western China, causing no injuries or serious damage (Washington Post/AP).
October 17, 1997
A mag. 5.9 quake occurred west of Macquarie Island early this morning.
October 15, 1997
Central Chile was struck by a mag. 6.8 quake that caused moderate damage and killed at least 8 people (Washington Post/AP). Large quakes also occurred today in southern Peru (mag. 5.6) and in the Aleutian Islands (mag. 6.0) No tsunami were generated.
October 14, 1997
An aftershock in Italy toppled a historic belltower (CNN). The quake had a magnitude of 4.9.
*A magnitude 6.5 quake rocked the Fiji Islands. No major damage was reported.
*Floods, blamed on El Niņo, have left hundreds homeless in Brazil (CNN/Reuters).
October 13, 1997
A mag. 5.8 quake shook southern Greece causing minor damage to buildings (Reuters).
*Hot stream eruptions propelled rocks and mud up to 200 m in the air above Ruapehu's crater lake over the weekend. IGNS reports that the crater lake level has dropped and that "there remains a likelihood of enhanced eruptive activity in the next few days to weeks should magma be intruded into the volcano" (Ruapehu Eruption Page with latest news releases). CNN reports a curious snowboarder was almost killed by flying rock from an eruption. (Also see CNN Quicktime movie of eruption)
*Activity at Montserrat continues at an elevated levels with 2 to 3 explosive eruptions a day (and a total of 51 eruptions since Sept. 22). These eruptions usually trigger pyroclastic flows in the surrounding valleys (MVO 10/13 Report).
October 10, 1997
Three more aftershocks (the greatest with a magnitude of 4.5) shook central Italy causing more damage to buildings weakened by earlier quakes (Washington Post/AP).
October 10, 1997
Alert levels have been raised at Ruapehu Volcano in New Zealand after an increase in seismic activity this week. The Institute of Geologic and Nuclear Studies (IGNS) also reports that visitors have observed "small geyser-like eruptions from the Crater Lake" and that "large volumes of steam continue to rise from the lake surface". (IGNS reports from 10/10 and 10/3.)
*Hurricane Pauline caused heavy flooding and numerous landslides in Mexico (CNN and CNN Quicktime Movie). At least 118 people were killed and many more are still missing.
October 8, 1997
A magnitude 5.6 quake occurred near Hokkaido, Japan at 21:21 GMT. No damage has been reported.
October 6, 1997
More quakes shake the southern Philipine Islands (mag. 5.5 and 5.7) and a mag. 5.9 quake occurred in the Solomon Islands. No tsunami were reported.
*Large aftershocks continue to cause damage in central Italy. Today a magnitude 5.3 quake shook the region that has been hit by at least 4 large quakes in the last two weeks (Reuters) that have caused over one billion dollars in damages (Washington Post/AP).
October 5, 1997
A mag. 5.5 quake shook the southern Philipines. Other large quakes occurred this weekend in the South Sandwich Islands Region (mag. 6.1) and along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (mag. 5.7).
October 4, 1997
Over the past few weeks, continuing eruptions from Hawaii's Pu`u `O`o crater have continued at rates of about 500,000 cubuc meters per day. The lava continues to flow to the sea via lava tubes and has built a bench out into the ocean. For more information see the October 2nd report form HVO.
October 1, 1997
Severe flooding in southern Guatemala, caused by heavy rains, has led authorities to evacuate towns near the Coyolate River (CNN/Reuters 10/2).


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