Volcano Video: Real Deal or Phony Farce?

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If you haven't yet seen the above video this week, then you might not have heard the various assults on its authenticity.  How could a man—even with a protective suit—get that close to violently spewing lava?

The man in the suit is Drew Bristol, filmed by volcanologist Geoff Mackley at the Marum Volcano on Ambrym Island in the South Pacific Ocean.  Mackley, from his home in New Zealand, told the U.K.'s Mail Online that the video is real.

“A long lens, which we used, foreshortens the image so the lava looks a lot closer to Drew in his protective silver-coloured suit than it appears,” he explained.

“[Drew] is about 100m from the surface of the lava — which is certainly close enough for him to require a protective suit.  The others of us were further up and while we could feel the intense heat we were quite a bit higher than Drew — although the camera makes us look as though we are just a bit above him.”

Mackley also said, “I don't fake things. What would be the point of me travelling around the world to film volcanoes and earthquakes and then faking the footage?”

Have any thoughts on the matter?  Post your comments and let us know what you think. 

–Michael Webster

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