Montserrat Volcano Observatory

Morning Report
Report for the period 4 pm 3 September
to 7 am 4 September 1997

Activity at the volcano has been moderate overnight. Seismic records have been dominated by rockfall signals and the volcano is starting to demonstrate again a cyclic nature in its behaviour, with peaks in activity every 16 hours or so. This morning the volcano was covered by low cloud. A pyroclastic flow was noted in the Gages valley around 5.30 this morning.

Explosions may take place with little or no warning and may be more intense and longer lasting than those which occurred at the beginning of August. If an explosion does occur, small rocks and ash can be expected to fall everywhere on the island. People should seek shelter under a strong roof and wear a helmet or other head protection. Ash and falling rocks make driving hazardous. Ash will be present in the atmosphere and masks should be worn outdoors.

Pyroclastic flows are expected on all flanks of the volcano, and it is never safe to enter the exclusion zone, including the Belham River valley. The size of the dome and the recent filling up of Mosquito Ghaut and the upper parts of Gages by pyroclastic flows make it more likely that large pyroclastic flows can enter the Belham Valley.

Access to the exclusion zone is completely restricted. Access to areas south of the Nantes River is allowed during the day, but only for essential visits. Everyone should remain vigilant and listen to Radio Montserrat.

Montserrat Volcano Observatory