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Saturday, June 10, 2006

New Zealand's Mt. Ngauruhoe on monitor alert - rise in earthquakes there..

Wellington - Scientists are monitoring Mount Ngauruhoe, one of New Zealand's most active volcanoes, after seismographs showed a significant rise in the frequency and magnitude of earthquakes in the area, reports said Wednesday.
The volcano's alert level was raised from zero to one, and hikers were warned to stay away from the crater atop the 2,291-metre peak in Tongariro National Park, though the Department of Conservation said that there was no sign of an imminent eruption.
Ngauruhoe periodically emits steam and gas but has not erupted since February 1975.
Scientist Harry Keys told the New Zealand Herald that raising the alert level was a precaution and standard practise for volcano management.
He pointed out that Mount Ruapehu, 16 kilometres from Ngauruhoe, which last erupted in 1995, had been on alert level one since October 1997.
The national park contains a third active volcanic peak, Mount Tongariro. All three sit at the south-western end of a volcanic chain stretching across the North Island and 2,000 kilometres up through the South Pacific ocean to Tonga.
© 2006 dpa - Deutsche Presse-Agentur

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