Montserrat Volcano Observatory

Daily Report
Report for the period 6 pm 6 February
to 6 pm 7 February 1998

The activity at the volcano was slightly lower today than over the previous days. Between 16:00 yesterday and 16:00 today there were 34 hybrid earthquakes, 16 long period earthquakes, 7 volcano-tectonic earthquakes and 54 distinct rockfall signals.

There were still periods of enhanced activity which were marked by the occurrence of increased rockfall activity and ash venting. These periods produced rapidly rising ash plumes from the active southern face of the dome which then seemed to move in a north-easterly direction. Vigorous pulses of ash production occurring every 10 to 20 seconds corresponded to rockfall signals recorded by the seismic network.

Visual observations of the dome were not possible due to low cloud.

Measurements of temperatures in the pyroclastic flow deposits from September, 1997 near Trants showed that at 1.05 m depth, the deposits were still 126 degrees centigrade. This emphasises that the deposits stay hot for many months after forming and they are still extremely dangerous.

Dust levels at St John's, one of the sites in Woodlands and St Peter's were very high today. At these dust levels it is recommended that ash masks be worn outside or in ashy conditions, especially when attempting to clean. The dust at the other site in Woodlands was at alert level. At this station, the levels are due to the proximity to a main road, and it is recommended that dust masks should be worn at all times. The elevated dust levels are due to the heavy ashfalls experienced during the previous few days as well as the remobilization of the fine particles mainly by wind and vehicular traffic.

People should remain alert and listen to Radio Montserrat for further information.

Montserrat Volcano Observatory