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Volcano Updates

The USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory issues Volcano Updates for Ta‘ū Island as activity warrants.

Alert Level: NORMAL, Color Code: GREEN 2023-11-02 19:21:07 UTC

U.S. Geological Survey
Thursday, November 2, 2023, 9:21 AM HST (Thursday, November 2, 2023, 19:21 UTC)

TA'U ISLAND (VNUM #244001)
14°13'48" S 169°27'14" W, Summit Elevation 3054 ft (931 m)
Current Volcano Alert Level: NORMAL
Current Aviation Color Code: GREEN

No significant activity was detected at Taʻū Volcano during the past month. The USGS National Earthquake Information Center reported no earthquakes of magnitude 2.5 or greater in the vicinity of the volcano. Two continuously recording Global Positioning System (GPS) instruments on Taʻū Island recorded no significant deformation.

At 3:07 a.m. SST on May 5, 2023, seismic station TAU, located on northwest Taʻū Island, was damaged during a lightning storm. The station is currently offline. The USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory is currently making plans to return to service the station within the coming months to year. Seismic station FAGA, located on northeast Taʻū Island, continues to record data normally.

Background: In Manuʻa Islands of eastern American Samoa, Taʻū Island is the top of a shield volcano, most of which is beneath the ocean. The volcano has a summit caldera, though landslides have removed the southern part of the caldera. Two rift zones are present on Taʻū, one to the northeast and one to the northwest. The northwest rift zone aligns with the Samoan Ridge, a predominantly submarine feature formed by volcanic activity associated with the Samoa hotspot, which is currently located at the Vailulu‘u seamount 40 kilometers (25 miles) east of Ta‘ū Island. The islands of Ta‘ū and Ofu-Olosega are situated on the crest of the Samoan Ridge. A submarine eruption occurred in 1866 on the Samoan Ridge between Ta‘ū and Ofu-Olosega. 

More Information:

This notice contains volcanoes not displayed here: Ofu-Olosega (NORMAL/GREEN), Tutuila Island (NORMAL/GREEN).

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory is one of five volcano observatories within the U.S. Geological Survey and is responsible for monitoring volcanoes and earthquakes in Hawaiʻi and American Samoa.


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