Water Woes On St Vincent As Eruption Continues At La Soufriere Volcano

La Soufriere Volcano: Explosive Eruptions, Ashfall And Pyroclastic Flows Occurring On St Vincent

(By Ernesto Cooke) – A water crisis is developing on the Caribbean island of St Vincent. Heavy ash fall from the La Soufriere volcano has created significant disruption to the regular water supply.

In the early hours of Monday 12th April, St Vincent experienced the largest eruption of La Soufriere since going explosive on Friday 9th April.

On Saturday, 10th April, St Vincent’s Central Water and Sewage Authority said that citizens should prepare for water rationing. 

Garth Saunders, Manager of the Central Water and Sewerage  Authority on the island, said on Monday 12th April, they were actively searching for new water sources.

Water Catchment Area Affected By Ashfall/CWSA

On Monday afternoon, NEMO, the island’s disaster agency, said standpipes were being erected in several communities on the western side of the island, bringing relief to thousands of residents.

Water is being delivered to communities across the island by trucks. 

Garth Saunders told NBC Radio on Monday, 12th April, the company have not been able to extract water from the rivers, and at present, only 15 percent of regular storage is available.

The CWSA manager said water collected before the eruption is dwindling; he stated that a limited supply is now available in the green zone; however, 250 gallons will be released to communities on the island’s Windward side.

Citizens Find Water where Ever They Can/News784

Yambou resident Sacha Bascombe a mother of four told news784 there had been no water in her community since Saturday 10th April.

“I’m out of drinking water; I can’t even bathe; why can’t they give us some water to fill up back? I spent almost 100$ on juices and dry biscuit that will only last two days, I am broke, please help”.

Grenada and Trinidad have shipments of bottled water en route to St Vincent.

According to the Scientists at UWI SRC: “the domes at La Soufriere have already been destroyed and ejected.  The eruption cloud went into the atmosphere and then collapsed, causing PDCs.

Explosive Eruption At La Soufriere/News784

The local disaster agency on the island NEMO said La Soufriere volcano continues to erupt explosively and has now begun to generate pyroclastic density currents. 

NEMO said explosions and accompanying ashfall of similar or larger magnitude are likely to continue to occur over the next few days on the island.


Ernesto Cooke

Ernesto Cooke has been a radio broadcaster for over twenty years; he was a news reporter at WEFM before joining News784. In addition, he has written for the New York Times and reported For the BBC during the La Soufriere eruptions of 2021.

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