Government Information Service

The Volcanic Explanation
For The 24 Hour Period Ending 7 AM On Wednesday February 19, 1997
A Presentation Of The Government Information Services
In Conjunction With The MVO.

The current alert level is AMBER

Over the last 24 hours the activity at the Soufriere Hills Volcano has been at a low level. There were two swarms of volcano-tectonic earthquakes leading to small rockfalls and pyroclastic flows.

Visibility yesterday was good and it was observed that some more dome material has come over the Galways Wall but the rockfalls did not travel as far as previous ones. The top of the wall is still crumbling and there are now three very well developed gullies to take the dome material.

Scientists also measured the extrusion rate of the dome and calculated that it is giving out material at the rate of 4 cubic metres per second. The dome is now the largest it has ever been and therefore further collapses and pyroclastic flows can be expected. No one should therefore visit any area in Zone A as this zone is extremely dangerous.

The alert level is now at AMBER and there is access during the day to all areas except Zone A. However Zones A, B, and C are still subject to curfew in nightime hours (6 pm to 6 am). Scientists do warn however, that activity can escalate and anyone visiting the unsafe zones should be vigilant.

Government Information Service