Volcano Erupts in St. Vincent and Grenadines, 20,000 Evacuated

 UWI Seismic Research Centre Team has reported a large explosion at La Soufriere volcano in St. Vincent and the Grenadines Monda
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Photo: Twittter

The UWI Seismic Research Centre Team has reported a large explosion at La Soufriere volcano in St. Vincent and the Grenadines Monday morning.

The explosion took place at about 4:15 a.m. and dangerous pyroclastic density currents (flows) were observed on the eastern and western flanks of the volcano, the SRC Team said. Pyroclastic flows are fast moving flows of lava, ash and hot gases which burn anything in their path.

La Soufriere began explosive eruptions on Friday, after springing back to life in December 2020 with effusive eruptions. The explosive eruptions have deposited a heavy ash cover over most of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

Neighbouring Barbados has also received heavy ash deposits, and Barbados Prime Minister Mia Mottley has announced today as the start of a national clean-up, urging Barbadians to clear up the ash from around their homes and properties. Smaller ash deposits were also reported in Grenada and Saint Lucia.

The Vincentian government on Thursday issued a mandatory evacuation order for residents in areas in the north of the island, close to the volcano. Some 20 thousand residents of this so-called Red-Zone are expected to be moved to shelters and other temporary accommodation in the southern part of the island.

Several neighbouring East Caribbean Islands have offered to accommodate some of the evacuees.

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