The dome of Unzen, Japan Volcano collapsed and created a pyroclastic flow in '91. The people here escaped when the flow stopped before reaching them, but the deadly and terrible speed of it, is astonishing.  Pyroclastic flows are fluidized masses of rock fragments and gases that move rapidly in response to gravity. They  can form in several different ways, such as when an eruption column collapses, as the result of gravitational collapse or from an explosion on a lava dome.

The dome of Unzen, Japan Volcano collapsed and created a pyroclastic flow in '91. The people here escaped when the flow stopped before reaching them, but the deadly and terrible speed of it, is astonishing. Pyroclastic flows are fluidized masses of rock fragments and gases that move rapidly in response to gravity. They can form in several different ways, such as when an eruption column collapses, as the result of gravitational collapse or from an explosion on a lava dome.

February 8, 2014 - Terrifying Sinabung Volcano Eruption. Pyroclastic flow as well as a towering cloud of tephra and gases

GLOBAL VOLCANISM: Global Volcano Report For February 8, 2014 - Terrifying Sinabung Volcano Eruption Spawns Amazing Towering Tornado-Like Twisters In Indonesia; Large Explosion At Kamchatka's Shiveluch Volcano; Increased Strombolian Activity And Lava Flow At Italy's Mount Etna; Summit Lava Lake Rises At Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano; Scientists Monitor Alaska's Shishaldin Volcano For Signs Of Eruption! [PHOTOS+VIDEO]

February 8, 2014 - Terrifying Sinabung Volcano Eruption. Pyroclastic flow as well as a towering cloud of tephra and gases

Pyroclastic flow will destroy nearly everything in its path. With rock fragments ranging in size from ash to boulders traveling across the ground at speeds greater than 80 km per hour, pyroclastic flows knock down, shatter, bury or carry away nearly all objects and structures in their way. The extreme temperatures of rocks and gas inside pyroclastic flows, between 200°C and 700°C, can cause combustible material to burn, especially petroleum products, wood, vegetation, and houses. -- Samuel…

Pyroclastic flow will destroy nearly everything in its path. With rock fragments ranging in size from ash to boulders traveling across the ground at speeds greater than 80 km per hour, pyroclastic flows knock down, shatter, bury or carry away nearly all objects and structures in their way. The extreme temperatures of rocks and gas inside pyroclastic flows, between 200°C and 700°C, can cause combustible material to burn, especially petroleum products, wood, vegetation, and houses. -- Samuel…

Pyroclastic flow sweeps down the side of Mayon Volcano, Philippines, during an explosive eruption on 15 September 1984. Note the ground-hugging cloud of ash (lower left) that is billowing from the pyroclastic flow and the eruption column rising from the top of the volcano.  Credit: Photograph by C. Newhall on 15 September 1984.

Pyroclastic flow sweeps down the side of Mayon Volcano, Philippines, during an explosive eruption on 15 September 1984. Note the ground-hugging cloud of ash (lower left) that is billowing from the pyroclastic flow and the eruption column rising from the top of the volcano. Credit: Photograph by C. Newhall on 15 September 1984.

~Volcanic Eruption ~ Mount Sinabung spews a column of hot gas and ash skyward, as seen from Tigapancur village in Karo district, on November 14, 2013 | Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images~~

~Volcanic Eruption ~ Mount Sinabung spews a column of hot gas and ash skyward, as seen from Tigapancur village in Karo district, on November 14, 2013 | Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images~~

Explosive eruption of Indonesia's Sinabung volcano ejecting ash and gas high up into the atmosphere and pyroclastic flows sweeping down downslope

Explosive eruption of Indonesia's Sinabung volcano ejecting ash and gas high up into the atmosphere and pyroclastic flows sweeping down downslope

A pyroclastic flow rushes down the side of Mount St. Helens on August 7, 1980. (USGS photo)

Mount St. Helens, 30 years ago

2010.10.29 - Mount Merapi releases a pyroclastic flow during eruption as seen from Deles, Central Java, Indonesia. There have been no new reports of injuries or damage. (AP Photo)

2010.10.29 - Mount Merapi releases a pyroclastic flow during eruption as seen from Deles, Central Java, Indonesia. There have been no new reports of injuries or damage. (AP Photo)

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