Airlines prepare for travel chaos as Alaskan volcano set to erupt

Ruth Doherty

Airlines across the globe are preparing for possible travel chaos because scientists have warned a remote Alaskan volcano - directly under US flight paths - could erupt at any time.

According to experts, satellite images of the volcano - which sits on the island of Chuginadak - show it could be about to erupt for the first time in 10 years.

The Alaska Volcano Observatory raised the alert level for the volcano after spotting 'thermal anomalies', and said it could erupt at any moment, spewing ash clouds up to 20,000 feet above sea level with little further warning.

The 5,676 foot-tall Cleveland volcano is located on the uninhabited island of Chuginadak in the Aleutian chain about 940 miles (1,500 km) southwest of Anchorage.

It is under the flight path between North America and Asia used by major airlines.

The town of Nikolski, the nearest settlement to Cleveland Volcano, is 45 miles (72 km) away.

Cleveland last erupted in 2001, and is the most active of Alaska's 90 volcanoes.

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