THE VOLCANIC EXPLANATION:-
Activity at the Soufriere Hills Volcano over the last 24 hours has been very similar to that for the earlier part of this week. There have been hybrid, long period and volcano tectonic earthquakes as well as over three dozen rockfall signals. Once again most of the rockfall acrtivity was from the south western flank of the volcanic dome. The seismic activity continues in 6 to 8 hour cycles.
Cloud cover prevents any views of the dome but scientists believe that the current activity shows that the dome is rebuilding above Galways in the scar left by the Boxing Day pyroclastic flows.
Activity on all other sectors of the dome is quite low at present and the air quality in the central and northern zones remains very good.
RMDF NEW COMMANDING OFFICER SWORN IN:-
This morning H.E. Dr Howard Fergus, Acting Governor swore in Captain Michael Duberry as the Commanding Officer of the Royal Montserrat Defence Force (RMDF).
Captain Duberry has replaced Major Joseph Lynch as Commanding officer - Major Lynch retired on December 31st 1997.
HEAVY OVERNIGHT RAINS:-
Heavy rain overnight has caused some surface water on roads, making driving conditions difficult in some parts of the island. In addition there has been some evidence of mudflows formed by volcanic debris in the exclusion zones.
The heavy rains of this week have held up some of the road improvement works at several sites around the island.
The recently released Scientific Report " Assessment of Volcanic Risk on Montserrat" is now available to members of the public here in Montserrat. Readers can examine copies at the Public Library and at the Governor's Office at McChesney's.
Earlier in the week ZJB Radio carried out a phone in programme about the report with the senior scientific staff at the Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO).
POWER PROBLEM FIXED:-
A power cable taking the electricity supply to Lawyer's Mountain burned out yesterday causing some problems to ZJB's transmitter, Cable & Wireless's repeater and the island's hand held radio network.
MONLEC officials quickly moved to repair the fault which was caused by the inclement weather conditions. All systems are now back up and running.
HEAD OF AMO IS LEAVING:-
The Head of the Aid Management Office (AMO) in Montserrat, Mr Frank Black is leaving the island later this weekend at the end of his 10 month tour of duty.
In a goodbye ceremony held earlier this week at McChesney's, H.E. The Acting Governor, H.A. Fergus and the Financial Secretary Mr C.T. John were amongst persons who paid glowing tributes to the work of Mr Black during the current volcanic emergency.
DEFENCE FORCE MEMBER LAID TO REST TOMORROW:-
The body of Royal Montserrat Defence Force Quartermaster Mr. J. Abraham Roach will be laid to rest tomorrow at a military funeral to be held at the St John's Anglican Church here in Montserrat at 3 pm.
Mr Roach died suddenly on December 31st aged 54 years the very day he was to retire from the Force. May he rest in peace!
Due to staff vacation leave and upgrading of our computer network here at the Emergency Department in Montserrat, the newsletter "Montserrat Today" will not be published during the next two weeks.
During this break, the Government Information Service Officer Mr Herman Sergeant will post to the Evergreen Network any official press releases emanating from his office.
Mr Sergeant's E mail address is:- firstname.lastname@example.org.
More information later in the month..........................