Almost 40 years after the disastrous and deadly eruption of Mount St. Helens on May 18th, 1980 in the state of Washington killing 57 and leaving $1.1 billion in damages after leveling over 250 homes, it is feared that the volcano may again erupt. Recently an earthquake with a magnitude of 8.2 struck Alaska and has triggered tsunami warnings across its coasts, and it is feared that it will awaken Mount St. Helens with the mountains threat level already being described as “very high” and shockwaves running through the northwestern United States.
The mountain being at the very top in Washington obviously isn’t a great thing considering those concerns. The 1980 earthquake was already enough, being considered the most dangerous volcano eruption in United States history. Destroying everything in its path whether it be houses, bridges, railways, highways, and even people. An avalanche of debris would quickly follow the quake and eruption and would end up reducing the actual height of the mountain by 1314 feet. And to top it all off, all of this was “only” after an earthquake with a magnitude of 5.1. So obviously it has some people pretty concerned.
According to the Alaska Volcano Observatory, they suspect that something may happen and have all relatively close volcanoes on close watch. The 1,730m Cleveland Volcano in Alaska is on the “watch” category and is in “Orange Alert” meaning they notice its escalating unrest, and heightened possibility of eruption. This category is right under “Warning/Orange” which is the categorization for when eruption is “imminent” or underway. A slightly larger Alaskan volcano, the Shishaldin Volcano is on a lower yellow alert. The other reason people are getting so interested and concerned is just from looking at the past and knowing that earthquakes ordinarily lead to other natural disasters. The earthquake last year in Mexico City caused a volcano eruption, Japan’s earthquake and tsunami in 2011, and countless others proving that they’re linked.
As of right now so far nothing has happened since the earthquake, but for certain it has not stopped the people that could possibly be effected from staying alert and on their toes. Hopefully it’ll stay quiet but really nobody is completely sure, with huge natural threats and disasters like these nobody knows or can prevent them. They just happen and that’s why they’re so shocking, harmful and deadly. The only thing we know is that nobody wants a repeat of what happened in 1980.