National

Eruption warning for Mount Hakone lifted

Kyodo

The Meteorological Agency on Friday lifted its volcanic activity warning for Mount Hakone after deeming the eruption risk back to normal after a small one disrupted the popular hot spring resort area in July.

Since the number of volcanic earthquakes remains low, the weather agency changed the volcanic alert level to 1 from 2 on the five-notch scale, signaling the situation had returned to normal and calling on people in the vicinity to be “mindful” of the volcano’s potential for activity. The alert level had been as high as 3 earlier in the year.

Nevertheless, the town of Hakone, Kanagawa Prefecture, said it will continue to restrict entry to certain areas near the Owakudani district until the density of volcanic gas recedes and safety is assured.

The alert level for Mount Hakone was raised in May after a small eruption was considered possible. In late June, it was lifted to 3, warning against approaching the volcano, after the agency realized that a small eruption had occurred.

Another eruption was observed on July 1, but volcanic activity has since receded, causing the warning level to be lowered to 2 in September, advising against approaching the volcano’s crater.