White Island is one of several volcanoes in New Zealand that can produce sudden explosive eruptions at any time. Photo: Xinhua
White Island is one of several volcanoes in New Zealand that can produce sudden explosive eruptions at any time. Photo: Xinhua
New Zealand

Explainer |
New Zealand volcano: why White Island erupted with no warning

  • At least five people have been confirmed dead and that toll is expected to rise, following the eruption on Monday at the popular tourist site
  • The expansion of water into steam is supersonic in speed and the liquid can expand to 1,700 times its original volume. This produces catastrophic impacts

White Island is one of several volcanoes in New Zealand that can produce sudden explosive eruptions at any time. Photo: Xinhua
White Island is one of several volcanoes in New Zealand that can produce sudden explosive eruptions at any time. Photo: Xinhua
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