Over 30 Feared Dead in Sudden and Devastating Japanese Volcano Eruption
Japan’s Mount Ontake volcano erupted without warning on Saturday, sending plumes of heavy, toxic volcanic ash and rock into the air, and causing embers to fall nearly two miles from its crater.
So far, 12 victims have been retrieved from the mountain, identified, and confirmed dead. Today, Nagano Prefecture Police said that 24 bodies remain on the slopes of the volcano, bringing the suspected death toll to at least 36.
More than 500 rescuers returned to the scene today. It is not yet clear how the victims died, but asphyxiation from poisonous gases is common in eruptions of this kind. This helicopter footage shows the ongoing rescue mission.