Volcano in southern Japan erupts for 1st time in 250 years

CORRECTS YEAR - In this April 19, 2018, photo, volcanic smoke billows from Mt. Io, foreground, part of the Kirishima mountain range on Japan’s southern main island of Kyushu, taken over Ebino city, Miyazaki prefecture. The Meteorological Agency said Friday, April 20, 2018 that Mt. Io erupted for the first time since 1768, spewing smoke and ash high into the sky. The agency has expanded a no-go zone to the entire mountain from just around the volcano’s crater. At back is Shinmoedake volcano. (Kyodo News via AP)
CORRECTS YAER - In this April 19, 2018, photo, volcanic smoke billows from Mt. Io, part of the Kirishima mountain range on Japan’s southern main island of Kyushu, taken over Ebino city, Miyazaki prefecture. The Meteorological Agency said Friday, April 20, 2018 that Mt. Io erupted for the first time since 1768, spewing smoke and ash high into the sky. The agency has expanded a no-go zone to the entire mountain from just around the volcano’s crater. (Kyodo News via AP)

TOKYO — A volcano in southern Japan has erupted for the first time in 250 years, and authorities set up a no-go zone around the mountain.

Mount Io spewed smoke and ash high into the sky Thursday in its first eruption since 1768. Japan's Meteorological Agency on Friday expanded a no-go zone to the entire mountain from previously just around the volcano's crater.

Explosions have briefly subsided Friday, but officials cautioned residents in nearby towns against falling volcanic rocks and ash.

The volcano is part of the Kirishima mountain range on Japan's southern main island of Kyushu. The area is about 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) southwest of Tokyo.

Another volcano nearby also erupted violently in March for the first time in seven years.

Japan sits on the Pacific "Ring of Fire" and has 110 active volcanoes.

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