Montserrat Volcano Observatory

Morning Report
Report for the period 4 pm 23 August
to 7 am 24 August 1997

Activity at the volcano continues to be at a reduced level. A period of ash and steam venting with some small pyroclastic flows in the upper Gages Valley occurred yesterday evening between 5 and 6:30 pm. Following this period the volcano was relatively quiet then until around 1 am. Activity built up slowly in the form of hybrids and rockfalls until a peak at around 5 am. At the peak there were signals associated in the past with pyroclastic flows and ash venting. The level of activity has declined since then and is currently at a relatively low level.

The summit of the volcano is currently shrouded in cloud.

Further explosions may take place with little or no warning. These may be more intense and longer lasting than those already experienced. If explosions do occur, people should seek shelter under as strong a roof as possible and have a helmet or head protection available. After an explosion small rocks and ash can be expected to fall everywhere on the island. Ash and falling rocks make driving hazardous. Ash is present in the atmosphere and masks should be worn outdoors.

Pyroclastic flows are expected on all flanks of the volcano, and so at no time is it safe to enter the exclusion zone, including the Belham river valley. Access to the exclusion zone is completely restricted. The access to areas south of the Nantes River is now only allowed during the day for essential visits. Everyone should remain vigilant and continue to listen to Radio Montserrat for any announcements.

Montserrat Volcano Observatory