Some 600 residents on a tiny island off Papua New Guinea have been evacuated after a volcano previously believed to be dormant erupted and spewed a "continuous plume" of ash, officials and reports said today.
"Since then, it's been emitting a continuous plume out to the west-northwest," centre forecaster Chris Kearney told AFP.
"It's been kept mostly over the ocean and still continuing as we speak."
American Christian non-governmental organisation Samaritan Aviation said all residents on the island were evacuated.
Kearney said the volcano was thought to be dormant before the surprise eruption.
"The volcano showed signs of seismic unrest back in 2015, so it was rumbling a bit, but it didn't erupt at that time, and that's the only activity in its recorded history apart from the recent eruption," he said.
"Currently, there are no reports of fatalities," the observatory added.
PNG sits on the Pacific "Ring of Fire" where high volcanic and seismic activity is the norm.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)