Baku, August 15, AZERTAC
The Japan Meteorological Agency on Saturday raised its volcanic alert for Sakurajima in Kagoshima Prefecture, southwestern Japan, from Level 3 to Level 4, calling on people in nearby areas to prepare for evacuation, according to Jiji Press.
Based on the Level 4 warning, issued at 10:15 a.m. (1:15 a.m. GMT), the agency advised residents in the Arimura and Furusato districts in the city of Kagoshima, the capital of the prefecture, to stay alert for large volcanic rocks and pyroclastic flows, and prepare to evacuate.
The two districts are located within 3 kilometers from Showa crater and Minami-dake crater of the volcano.
It is the first time that the Level 4 alert has been issued for Sakurajima since the volcanic eruption alert system was introduced in 2007. The Level 3 alert bans the entry to areas in a 2-kilometer radius of a crater.
According to the agency, a number of earthquakes with their centers in Sakurajima have occurred since 7 a.m. Saturday. A measuring instrument installed there showed that rapid tectonic movements indicating the swelling of Sakurajima have been observed.