Volcanologist Explains Vailuluu Earthquakes
By: Tosimae'a Typua
A little over two weeks now residents of Manua have been on edge due to seismic activities shaking the entire Manua group. Volcanologist Natalia Deligne said in an interview with KVZK News it is difficult to determine exactly how large the size of the activity is in Manua until the proper equipment arrives next week. According to Deligne the people in Manua are probably feeling short yet powerful jolts which suggest that these are local sources meaning it is smaller in comparison if it was a bigger earthquake more people will be feeling its force.
The explosion in Tonga is still fresh in people's minds but people should not be concerned as Vailuluu is very different to the volcano, says Deligne. The volcanoes here are similar to the ones in Hawaii with basaltic lava whereas what we saw in Tonga was a subduction zone volcano, very explosive, said Deligne.
With proper equipment still on the way from the mainland to help Deligne with her work in Manua, she asks that residents of Manua record when the shakes are happening, and report any changes they see in the interim.
Deligne urges the people of Manua to remain vigilant as she is unable to determine where these earthquakes originate from. “Based on information provided I suspect they might be closer than Vailuluu because if they were that far away then they would be more widely felt. Also, it appears these earthquakes are occurring on the eastern part of the island”, said Deligne.
Elinor Lutu-McMoore and Natalia Deligne are in Manua to carry out the first part of the investigation together with the first team of first responders. The rest of the team from USGS will join them sometime next week.