La Soufriere: Materials At New Dome Can Fill 2500 Olympic Sized Pools

The effusive eruption, ongoing fumarolic activity, expansion of the new dome, and increased seismic activity continue at La Soufriere volcano on St Vincent and the Grenadines. The country remains on Orange Alert.

(By Ernesto Cooke) On 29 Dec 2020, the La Soufrière volcano’s alert level in St. Vincent and the Grenadines was elevated to Orange because of increased activity at the site. 

The volcano has had an effusive eruption, with visible gas and steam eruption and a new volcanic dome formation. 

On 13 Feb 2021, UWI SRC officials said that materials that have accumalated at the new dome at La Soufriere volcano can fill 2500 Olympic sized pools.

On 12th Feb 2021, a rockfall occurred at the new dome. It was recorded by the UWI SRC Electronics Technician Garth Mannette during fieldwork at the summit of La Soufrière.

The UWI SRC team here in SVG says the magma is not compact, it is unstable and can fall down the sides of the new dome.

In its latest update, the National Emergency Management Organization said the United States Geological Survey (USGS) through its Volcano Disaster Assistance Programme (VDAP) donated a quantity of equipment to aide in near crater monitoring.

Among the donation is equipment to build four seismic stations and radios to enhance communications.

Three of the stations are solar-powered installations with post-hole seismometers and the fourth a spider seismometer.

The spider seismometer is designed for rapid deployment in high-risk locations and would minimize human exposure to hazards, e.g. (volcanic craters).

In the event of escalated volcanic activity at La Soufriere, enhanced monitoring would allow scientists to alert NEMO with sufficient time to activate appropriate emergency responses.

The National Emergency Management Organisation is reminding the public that no evacuation order or notice has been issued.

NEMO continues to appeal to the public to desist from visiting the La Soufrière Volcano, especially going into the crater, since doing so is extremely dangerous.

A UWI Seismic Research Centre team is currently in St. Vincent to support monitoring and data collection and analysis.

An Orange Level alert means highly elevated seismicity or fumarolic activity, or both.

Eruptions may occur with less than 24 hours notice.

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