Monday, April 18, 2005

The Year Without Summer - Mt. Tambora

The explosion of Krakatoa is a well known event, awful in it's enormity, but there was one even worse in recorded history.

I was watching the Discovery Channel when I learned about Mt. Tambora.
Five days later, on 10 April, a number of colossal explosions occurred, creating columns of volcanic material that stretched up to 40km (25 miles) into the sky. What goes up normally comes down, so when these columns collapsed, they formed pyroclastic flows - earth-hugging clouds of hot ash, rocks and pumice, that rampaged across the island killing everyone and everything in their path2. Almost the entire population of the Tambora province, over 10,000 people, were killed instantly by these flows. In addition, when these flows reached the sea, tsunamis up to 5m high were formed, that careered into neighbouring islands across the locality, killing yet more people in the immediate vicinity of the volcano.
These pyroclastic flows were so hot that a glass bottle that was found in the hand of a victim had begun to melt. Death was instantaneous. The tsunami was formed by the pyroclastic flow, not any earthquake or the eruption itself and was still 5 meters high, roughly the same as the one that hit the Indian Ocean in December of 2004.

The Deadliest Volcanic Eruptions

VEI 8 at Yellowstone

I wonder why the Left™ hasn't blamed it on the U.S. yet.

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