Government Information Service

The Volcanic Explanation
For The 24 Hour Period Ending 6 PM On Sunday 15 December, 1996
A Presentation Of The Government Information Services
In Conjunction With The MVO

The seismicity at the Soufriere Hills Volcano has been low over the last 24 hours. However, the situation remains serious with the Galways Wall under threat of collapse and both the wall and Chances Peak showing serious cracks which have widened since yesterday.

The new dome discovered last Wednesday is already higher than the second or October 1st dome and now stands at about 910 metres above sea level. Visibility was excellent this afternoon (Sunday) and several inspections were carried out by helicopter.

Over the last 24 hours there have been no volcano-tectonic earthquakes recorded at all, however there were four (4) long period events and four rockfalls off the dome. Two of these rockfalls caused some ash to fall in the Rileys area.

No EDM or GPS measurements were taken at all today, however the cracks on Galways Wall and Chances Peak were measured. Results show that they are getting wider.

The alert remains at ORANGE which means there should be no one living in Zones A,B,C, and D. Zone E remains safe at the present time.

At the MVO, two geologists from the USA arrived today, they are Rick Hoblitt and Randy White. In addition Mark Davies arrived from Britain. All are expected to stay for a month.

Government Information Service