Hiker Catches Volcano’s Eruption On Video, And Is Overtaken By Ash

Something to keep in mind when you’re out hiking: Think about the essentials. Food, water, shelter…or if circumstances demand it, something through which you can breathe in case you’re outrun by a cloud of asphyxiating volcanic ash:

From the article:

A huge cloud of rolling ash and dust poured down the side of Mt. Ontake in central Japan Saturday, as the volcano erupted and coated the surrounding area in ash. The sudden eruption initially stranded more than 250 hikers; one of them managed to shoot video of the shocking sight of an immense billowing gray cloud speeding toward them.

Dozens of people are reportedly injured and at least seven are missing on the mountain, whose summit is around 10,000 feet. This is a busy time of year on Mt. Ontake, where a relatively gentle slope and mountainside lodges draw visitors who want to take in views of the fall foliage.

Story goes on to mention 41 hikers still on the mountain waiting to be rescued. Of those rescued, 10 remain conscious. One dead.

You can hear them choking on the ash just a couple of seconds before the end. One wonders how it is that the statistics weren’t much worse.

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