The active Cascade volcanoes, including our own Mount Baker, that make our state so beautiful could erupt sometime in the future. How can you prepare for a volcanic eruption? How will you react if one of Washington’s volcanoes erupts?
Volcano preparedness month is a time to inform yourself about volcanic hazards and to make a plan to keep you and your family safe in case of a volcanic eruption or lahar (volcanic mudflow). To help you, we have created a new booklet about volcanic hazards in Washington. Learn about lahars, how to stay safe from ashfall, and how to get information in case of an eruption. See what items you might need in your emergency kit. You can download the booklet by clicking on the image below:
Be ready for the next volcanic event.
There will be some indication that a volcano may erupt, but the time between the earliest indications of unrest and eruptive activity might be short, from days to weeks or months. The United States Geological Survey Volcano Hazards Program and its monitoring partners work to detect the earliest signals of volcanic unrest to forewarn communities at-risk and provide time for officials to activate emergency response plans and mitigation measures that can save lives and protect property. Because eruptions typically go through episodic cycles of increased activity and relative quiet after they begin, Volcano Hazards Program scientists monitor volcanic behavior very closely to determine when it is safe to declare an eruption is over. In some cases, like in Hawaii, eruptions can continue for several tens of years.
We are all in this together. Everyone has a role in preparedness.
For more information, contact the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office Division of Emergency Management, (360) 676-6681. You can also visit our Volcanic Hazards Page.