Evidence Mounts that Mt. Fuji Could Erupt Any Day. No Big Deal.

We already heard early last year from a somewhat eccentric retired Japanese university professor that Mt. Fuji was on the verge of eruption, but when the professor’s predicted eruption date came and went without incident, people kind of stopped heeding his warnings and put the whole thing in the backs of their minds along with that Second Coming of Christ we’ve all been waiting for.

But now a French research team at the Institute of Earth Sciences insists the Japanese – and especially those living at or near the base of Mt. Fuji – should probably start panicking all over again.

Don't worry, Kabukicho will (probably) be fine. (Via Wikimedia Commons)

Don’t worry, Kabukicho will (probably) be fine. (Via Wikimedia Commons)

The research team found that the March, 2011 earthquake that struck Japan caused all kinds of geological craziness in and around the mountain, which has led to an enormous amount of geological pressure and sent the volcano into a “critical state” – meaning it could erupt without warning at any time. You can read the exact details here. We read all the science-y mumbo jumbo as long as we could but eventually tuned out, at which point the researchers might as well have been reciting Voodoo incantations.

When it finally does blow, those waiting in the five-hour long queue to reach the summit will be most in danger. (Via Wikimedia Commons)

When it finally does blow, those waiting in the five-hour long queue to reach the summit will be most in danger. (Via Wikimedia Commons)

And tuning out is kind of the problem; You can warn people living near the volcano as much as you want that the mountain is critical, but unless you give them an exact date, nobody’s going to make the effort to turn off their daytime talk shows and start packing an emergency kit.

So, sure, Mt. Fuji is critical. But, until the exact moment we all die a fiery death, no big deal!

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