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USGS officials returns a year after Tau’s volcano started shaking

Officials from the US Geological Survey will be in the territory this week to visit the Manu’a Islands a year after Tau’s volcano started shaking.


A press statement released by the USGS noted that, fortunately, there have been no additional earthquakes since the volcanic unrest ended last October.


This month, USGS staff will be here to conduct outreach, strengthen relationships with partners, and maintain the monitoring network.


The first felt earthquake was reported over a year ago, on July 26, 2022. Until early September 2022, hundreds of earthquakes were felt throughout the Manuʻa Islands; one earthquake was as far away as Tutuila.


The events were highly unusual for American Samoa, so much so that the islands had no volcano monitoring equipment when the unrest began.


In response to the unrest, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) rapidly deployed staff and monitoring equipment in August and September 2022. HVO established a rapid monitoring network across American Samoa and kept the local community, federal and local partners informed on the dynamic situation.


In December 2022, a few months after the unrest ended, a small team returned to service the newly established monitoring network.


While on Taʻu Island, they will replace the TAU broadband equipment damaged during a lightning storm on May 5, 2023, and is currently offline.


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