Volcano in SW Japan continues to erupt

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A volcano in southwestern Japan continued to erupt for a second consecutive day on Thursday, following an eruption early Wednesday morning, the weather agency said.

According to the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA), the plume from Mt. Shinmoe, one of the 50 active volcanoes constantly under the agency's observation, rose around 2,000 meters above the crater on Thursday.

The plume on Wednesday initially rose around 300 meters, the agency said, adding that it had raised its volcanic alert level.

Wednesday's eruption marked the first time since 2011 that the volcano had experienced a major eruption.

The 1,421-meter volcano, which straddles the borders of both Kagoshima and Miyazaki prefectures, had been showing signs of intensified activities since late September.

Ashes from the eruption have fallen in some areas of Miyazaki prefecture causing local residents to clean their houses, cars and clothes.

Local municipalities had to hose off roads and pavements, local media reported.

The agency warned on Thursday that ash could fall in the neighboring prefectures of Kumamoto and Kagoshima henceforth.

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