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Volcano eruption in Aleutian Islands sparks aviation alert

The Alaska Volcano Observatory has issued its highest level of alert for aviation after what it says was a brief eruption of a volcano on the Aleutian Islands today.

The observatory says pilots reported the Bogoslof volcano on Bogoslof Island, which is part of the Aleutian Islands, erupted about 4 p.m. Alaska time.

The pilots told the observatory that a volcanic ash cloud rose to 34,000 feet.

The observatory says in a press release that satellite data show a short-lived explosion just before 4 p.m. that drifted to the south about 15 minutes later. The observatory says a subsequent pilot report at 4:50 p.m. said the volcanic activity had decreased.

The observatory said later that the steam and ash cloud had mostly dissipated, adding it posed little air-quality problems for local communities.

The volcano is located about 850 miles southwest of Anchorage.

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