Jabal al-Tair Island

Jabal al-Tair Island, known by many other names including Tair Island and Jebel Teir, is a volcanic island that is located in the Red Sea and is under the jurisdiction of Yemen. It reaches an elevation of 801 feet and is about 1.9 miles in length. The island is comprised of Jabal al-Tair, a stratovolcano that was considered extinct in 1982, although it erupted in 2007. In 1900, the British Admiralty described the volcano as having a steep, conical shape, making it a good landmark for ships traveling through the Red Sea.

Although there are no settlements on the island, some fishermen can be found there seasonally. After disputes between Yemen, Ethiopia, and eventually Eritrea ended in the dispersal of various islands in the Red Sea, including Jabal al-Tair, Yemen constructed two watchtowers on the island in order to monitor passing war and trading ships. It is unknown of these towers survived the 2007 eruption.

The 2007 eruption of Jabal al-Tair produced lava and ash plumes that flew hundreds of meters into the air and a lava flow that moved into the sea. Reports stated that twenty-nine or fifty Yemen soldiers were evacuated from the island before the eruption, but that eight of these soldiers had gone missing. Many ships, including HMCS Toronto, the USS Bainbridge, and the HNLMS Evertsen, formed a search party to locate the missing soldiers, but only two were rescued.

Image Caption: Jebel at Tair Island in Red Sea. Credit: NASA/Wikipedia