As police closed roads and tourists were told to stay away from a renowned volcanic steam vent on the slopes of Mount Hakone, local officials and businesses pledged Thursday to do what they could to prevent trade dying.

On Wednesday, the Meteorological Agency raised its alert for the area from 1, denoting normal, to 2, a level which regulates entry to areas around the volcanic vent. It warned of the risk of a small eruption, urging people to stay away from potentially dangerous areas.

An eruption of any size would likely have an impact on the Owakudani hot spring district.