Tongans warned of acid rain after volcanic eruption


A toxic cloud spewing from an erupting volcano in Tonga could dump acid rainfall across the Pacific kingdom, potentially poisoning drinking water and damaging people's skin and eyes, emergency services have warned.

The remote Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai volcano erupted Monday, sending plumes 18 kilometres (11 miles) into the air, Tonga Geological Services (TGS) said.

Police reported no injuries from the eruption but TGS said late Tuesday that the dust and gas could result in acidic rainfall if mixed with water in the atmosphere.

It advised residents to remove guttering systems from their rainwater storage systems until the all-clear was given.

"Symptoms of exposure to acid rain are itchiness and skin irritation, blurry and discolouration of vision if exposed to the eye," it said.

with information from

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