posted on Aug, 20 2003 @ 10:15 PM
I have long been thinking that Mt. Ranier is the next major eruption risk, although compared to Yellowstone its rather small. (No offense Fury...)
Keep in mind, Mt. St. Helens wasnt that damaging because its slope failed on the side facing away from populated areas... call it luck.
Basically, what led to Mt. St. Helens eruption was that one side proceeded to "inflate" laterally (parrellel to the ground), until it was distended
to the point that it could no longer support its own weight, at which point it collapsed vertically, which released the contained the magmatic
The eruption was equivalent to 20-25 megaton nuclear blast.
Assuming an eruption of the same magnitude, oriented due north (towards Tacoma and Seattle) Tacoma would likely suffer the most severe damage, however
due to the distance it would likely recieve some pyroclastic flow but not much of the blast wave. Seattle would likely be too far away to be severly
damaged, although it would likely recieve very significant ashfall.
Not to diminish the explosive potential during an eruption: most likely, any people or lifeforms between Mt. Rainier and Tacoma not protected in a
substantial bunker would likely be killed outright by the pryoclastic flow.