Guatemala’s Volcano of Fire erupts

Lava flows from Fuego volcano during an eruption as seen from Alotenango, on the outskirts of Guatemala City, Guatemala, March 2, 2016. — Reuters pic
Lava flows from Fuego volcano during an eruption as seen from Alotenango, on the outskirts of Guatemala City, Guatemala, March 2, 2016. — Reuters pic

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GUATEMALA CITYN, Feb 26 — Guatemala’s Volcano of Fire erupted yesterday, spewing lava and sending up plumes of ash that rained down on nearby communities and could eventually reach the capital, civil protection authorities said.

The Volcan de Fuego, one of the country’s three active volcanos, is located about 45 kilometres (28 miles) southwest of the capital Guatemala City. It was the volcano’s second eruption this year.

David de Leon, spokesman for the National Coordinator for Disaster Reduction, said the volcanic activity later stabilized and fell within the normal range after an eruptive phase that lasted 13 hours.

The rumbling 3,763-metre-high (12,345-foot) volcano registered a powerful eruption from 11:28pm Friday (1328 GMT Saturday in Malaysia).

In the afternoon, explosions generated ash columns 4,500 metres above sea level, 500 metres less than in the morning. The longest of three lava flows so far stretched 1,600 metres.

Although the ash could travel as far as Guatemala City, it has not yet reached the capital, instead affecting populations in the four departments near the volcano.

Earlier, it pumped out a series of moderate and strong explosions, according to the National Institute of Seismology, Volcanology, Meteorology and Hydrology.

In addition to Fuego, the Central American country has two other active volcanos: Santiaguito in the west and Pacaya in the south, just 30 kilometres from the capital. — AFP

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