On May 18, 1980,
Mount St. Helens in the Cascade Range of Washington exploded with what is probably
the most visible indication of the power of nature that the modern world has
ever seen. At 8:32 A.M. the explosion ripped 1,300 feet off the mountain, with
a force of ten million tons of TNT, or roughly equal to five hundred Hiroshimas.
Sixty people were killed, most by a blast of 300-degree heat traveling at two
hundred miles an hour. Some were killed as far as sixteen miles away.

The blast also
leveled 150-foot Douglas firs, as far as seventeen miles away. A total of 3.2
billion board-feet of lumber were destroyed, enough to build 200,000 three-bedroom
homes.

 – Michael P. Green, Illustrations For Biblical Preaching


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