Activity at the Soufriere Hills volcano has remained at a relatively low level overnight, with seismic activity comprising mainly signals generated by rockfalls and pyroclastic flows. There has been a slight increase in the number of rockfall and pyroclastic flow signals recorded by the seismic network, with notable peaks in activity between midnight and 2 am and also at about 5 am, when a series of pyroclastic flows appears to have been generated. A total of 4 locatable volcano-tectonic earthquakes have also been recorded overnight - these occurred beneath the crater at shallow depths.
The summit of the volcano is cloudy this morning so that no visual observations have been possible so far.
Despite the reduction in surface activity, the October 1 dome remains in an unstable configuration, and so a major collapse is still possible as well as continued generation of pyroclastic flows in the Tar River valley. Such a collapse, which would probably be initiated over a period of several hours, would produce large pyroclastic flows in the Tar River valley and heavy ash fall downwind of the volcano. Should the collapse be very large, then an explosive eruption is possible, in the same way that it followed a major dome collapse on September 17/18. At the moment the scientists are confident that zone E, which includes Corkhill and the airport, remains safe. The Tar River area is extremely dangerous, and should not be entered in any circumstances.