Montserrat Volcano Observatory

Daily Report
Report for the period 6pm 18 May
to 6pm 19 May 1998

The level of volcanic activity has been low today. Between 4 pm yesterday and 4 pm today, 11 volcano-tectonic earthquakes and 2 rockfalls were recorded by the seismograph networks.

The volcano was covered with cloud. A pyroclastic flow travelled down the Tar River at 2.15 pm reaching within 500 m of the Tar River Estate. The flow caused one of the rock fall signals. The flow produced only a weak ash cloud and field inspection indicated that the flow was due to instability of part of the dome erupted in December 1996. The flow emphasises that the dome is still very unstable and that flows can occur can occur down all flanks with little or no warning.

Dust levels were low today at all sites. There was a distinct smell of hydrogen sulphide gas (like rotten eggs) on the eastern side of the volcano. MVO is planning to obtain instruments to monitor the abundance of this gas in the environment.

Residents are reminded that the volcano remains in a potentially active state, and that they should continue listening to Radio Montserrat in case the present quiet situation at the volcano changes suddenly.

Montserrat Volcano Observatory