Volcano erupts in Japan

February 2nd, 2009 - 11:27 am ICT by IANS  

Tokyo, Feb 2 (Xinhua) Mount Asama, a volcano in central Japan erupted early Monday, spewing hot rocks and ash. No major damage was reported, the Japan Meteorological Agency said.The 2,568-meter volcano, straddling central Gunma and Nagano prefectures, about 145 km from Tokyo, erupted at 1.51 a.m. Monday, the meteorological agency said. TV reports showed ash showering down in neighbouring regions.

Authorities in the town of Karuizawa in Nagano prefecture said about two millimetres of ash lay scattered in the area but no lava could be seen.

The last major eruption of the volcano happened in 2004, causing damage to crops.

On Sunday, the agency had raised the volcanic eruption alert level for Mount Asama from two to three on the five-stage warning scale, prohibiting people from going to Mount Asama.

Japan has 108 active volcanoes and is one of the most seismically busy areas in the world.

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