A sleeping volcano close to the damaged Sendai nuclear power plant in Japan is erupting, raising concerns of a probable nuclear disaster.
Mount Ioyama on the island of Kyushu is about 64km away from the Sendai plant.
This comes nearly a month after the eruption of Mount Ontake volcano, which killed 57 people.
Japan lies in the Ring of Fire band and has more than 100 volcanoes.
According to volcanologists, a major earthquake of 2011 could have intensified the volcanic activity across the country.
If the Mount Ioyama erupts, it is likely to create another major nationwide disaster, News.com.au reports, citing government-commissioned panel on volcanic eruption prediction head Toshitsugu Fujii.
An official from the Japan Meteorological Agency's volcano division has said that the warning level for Mount Ioyama on the threat scale has been raised from the lowest possible level to the second highest.
Road access to the area near Mount Ioyama has been closed following a warning issued by Japan's Meteorological Agency.
Restarting the Sendai nuclear power plant has been deemed dangerous for the country, which is still coping with the after-effects of the Fukushima disaster.
Despite public concerns, the Japanese Government had announced its decision to restart the Kyushu Electric Power owned Sendai plant earlier this year. This is expected to happen by 2015 post operational safety checks and approvals from local authorities.
The power plant is also reported to be a mere 50km away from Mount Sakurajima, another active volcano that erupts frequently.
Image: The Japanese Government had announced its decision to restart the Kyushu Electric Power owned Sendai plant earlier this year. Photo: courtesy of KEI / Wikipedia.