Montserrat Volcano Observatory

Daily Report
Report for the period 16:00 30 August
to 16:00 31 August 1996

The level of activity at the Soufriere Hills volcano during this reporting period was slightly lower than that for the previous 24 hours but the pattern was still dominated by small- to moderate-sized rockfalls, mainly from the eastern flank of the growing lava dome.

One hundred and seven (107) rockfalls, 5 long-period and 16 volcano-tectonic earthquakes were recorded. The rockfalls were mainly concentrated within two periods from 22:00 on 30 August to 02:00 today and from 10:00 to 14:00 today. The largest rockfalls were recorded at 20:57 and 23:15 on 30 August and 11:30, 12:55 and 13:35 today. Several of these rockfalls resulted in very small ash clouds which were blown on the wind, resulting in very light ashfalls in the Long Ground and Whites areas. The volcano-tectonic earthquakes were located beneath English's Crater at depths less than 2 km. Intermittent low-amplitude broadband tremor was also recorded at most of the stations closest to the Crater throughout the reporting period.

The volcano was covered by clouds throughout the day.

COSPEC and EDM measurements were not made today because of instrumental problems and the low cloud cover respectively.

Further rockfalls and pyroclastic flows will occur but all indications at the moment are that the pyroclastic flows will be confined to the Tar River Valley area. However, areas affected by associated ashfalls will obviously depend on the direction and strength of the wind at the time. People in areas affected by ash falls should exercise great care when driving. Dust masks should be worn in ashy environments.

The Tar River Valley and surrounding areas are now extremely hazardous, and should not be entered under any circumstances. We urge individuals who continue to ignore this advice to think very seriously before making trips to these highly hazardous zones.

Montserrat Volcano Observatory