FURTHER ERUPTIONS OF MT. ULAWUN CONFIRM FEARS OF VILLAGERS

PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (October 12, 2000 - Post-Courier/PINA Nius Online)---People displaced by the Ulawun volcanic eruption two weeks ago had their continuing fears confirmed when two more minor eruptions were recorded.

The volcanic alert had been downgraded to normal towards the end of last week and the people told to return to their villages but they had refused, fearing another eruption.

Disaster control officials in Bialla said the people believed there would be another eruption as was the case in past eruptions.

The new minor eruptions were confirmed by disaster control officials in Bialla and at the Rabaul Volcanological Observatory in their routine update of volcanic activity to the East and West New Britain provincial disaster committees.

The report said there had been a slow increase in seismic activity since 10:00 p.m. on Saturday, which reached a plateau at about 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, and had been fluctuating at a relatively steady level.

It said there were some changes in the pattern of seismic activity. Volcanic tremors became less distinct and low, frequent sea earthquakes began to occur more prominently. 

Noises were heard coming from the volcano at about 9:00 p.m. on Sunday by people at Navo on the west and Baia on the east side of Mt. Ulawun, the report said.

It said, however, that the overall trend in seismicity remained at low to moderate level and measurements from the electronic tiltmeter near the top of the mountain showed no significant change.

For additional reports from The Post-Courier, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Newspapers/The Post-Courier (Papua New Guinea).

Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) Website: http://www.pinanius.org 

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