Global & Disaster Medicine

Archive for the ‘Historical’ Category

Volcanic ashfall in American history


May 18, 1980: Mt. St. Helens erupts; 60 killed

USGS

Prior to 1980, Mount St. Helens had the shape of a conical, youthful volcano sometimes referred to as the Mount Fuji of America. During the 1980 eruption the upper 400 m (1,300 ft) of the summit was removed by a huge debris avalanche, leaving a 2 x 3.5 km (1.2 x 2.2 mi) horseshoe-shaped crater now partially filled by a lava dome and a glacier. It is primarily an explosive dacite volcano with a complex magmatic system.

Mount St. Helens was formed during four eruptive stages beginning about 275,000 years ago and has been the most active volcano in the Cascade Range during the Holocene. Prior to about 12,800 years ago, tephra, lava domes, and pyroclastic flows were erupted, forming the older St. Helens edifice, but a few lava flows extended beyond the base of the volcano. The bulk of the modern edifice (above the 1980 crater floor) was constructed during the last 3,000 years, when the volcano erupted a wide variety of products from summit and flank vents. Historical eruptions in the 19th century originated from the Goat Rocks area on the north flank, and were witnessed by early settlers. New unpublished data on the timing for Mount St. Helens eruptive activity have been analyzed, which improves some of the eruption dates cited in published literature. This website contains the most up to date information.

Since its 1980 eruption, the summit elevation has decreased. A survey in 1982 gave a measurement of 2549.7 m (8365 ft). However, a lidar survey done in 2009 found the maximum elevation to be 2539 m (8330 ft). The difference in elevation is likely due to erosion and loss of rimrock by crater-wall collapses.

Digital Elevation Map of Mount St. Helens with annotation of pre-1980 topography and deposits from 1980 - 2008.


May 18, 1927: Bath School Disaster, Bath MI. Andrew Kehoe blows up Bath Consolidated School killing 38 children, 2 teachers.


5/6/1937: The German airship Hindenburg, the largest dirigible ever built, explodes over Lakehurst, New Jersey killing 36.


5/4/1886: A peaceful labor protest in Haymarket Square in Chicago, Illinois, turns into a riot, leaving more than 100 wounded and 8 police officers dead.

History

 


4/29/1991: A devastating cyclone hits Bangladesh, killing more than 135,000 people.

History Channel

 


4/18/1983: The U.S. embassy in Beirut, Lebanon, is virtually destroyed by a car-bomb explosion that kills 63.

History Channel

 


4/16/1906: At 5:13 a.m., an earthquake estimated at close to 8.0 on the Richter scale strikes San Francisco, California, killing up to 3000 people, toppling numerous buildings, and causing an enormour firestorm..

History Channel

 


Video of Market Street 4 days before the 1906 earthquake in Frisco

Nine minutes of newly found footage, restored from an aging film reel that was revealed publicly this weekend, shows the aftermath of the earthquake that devastated San Francisco in 1906.


Heavy eruptions of the Tambora volcano in Indonesia over the course of days killed over 100 000.

History Channel

“….. In subsequent months, more than 80,000 people died in the surrounding area from starvation due to the resulting crop failures and disease…..”

 


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