TOKYO, Japan - The Japanese Meteorological Agency expanded the warning days after the Mount Shinmoedake volcano erupted.
On Thursday, the Mount Shinmoedake volcano erupted, sending ash and smoke thousands of feet into the air.
Authorities said that since then, the volcano has continued the erupt, sending flying rocks into the air, leading the country’s Meteorological Agency to issue a more widespread cautionary measure.
According to the agency, the rocks may travel up to 2.5 miles away, rising farther that the previous warning of about 1.9 miles.
However, experts suggest that so far, it is not known exactly how long the activity is expected to continue and possibilities are high that it could last for several months.
Mount Shinmoedake previously erupted in 2011, sending massive chunks of lava, known as volcanic bombs, more than 4 miles from the volcano’s mouth.
The journal Nature reported that the current eruption is the largest to occur in seven years.
Toshitugu Fujii, a University of Tokyo emeritus professor and chairman of the Coordinating Committee for Prediction of Volcanic Eruptions, was quoted as saying, “By increasing the monitoring tools, we may detect the timing of eruptions, but it is quite difficult to predict the mode of eruption before the actual eruption.”
Fujii added, “Still we believe we can detect some change in mode of eruption through the continuous monitoring, and may be able to detect the precursors of a huge explosive eruption.”