Montserrat Volcano Observatory

Morning Update
Report for the period 16:00 03 September
to 07:00 04 September 1996

Activity at the Soufriere Hills volcano during the night was similar in nature to that observed during the previous reporting period but the level was slightly lower. Small- to moderate-sized rockfalls and several small pyroclastic flows were the dominant features on the seismic records. Activity was at its highest during the period from around 23:50 on 03 September to 01:10 on 04 September. Some of the ash generated by the rockfalls and pyroclastic flows seems to have been carried by light winds towards the north and northwest, resulting in reported light to moderate ashfall in Old Towne, Salem, Woodlands, St. Johns and probably several other communities. A few small long-period and hybrid earthquakes were also recorded. Intermittent broadband tremor was recorded at the stations closest to the volcano.

The dome was not visible during the early morning period because of low cloud cover on the volcano.

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. Extreme care should be taken when driving in ash affected areas. Dust masks should be worn at all times in ashy environments.

The Tar River Valley and surrounding areas are extremely hazardous and should not be entered under any circumstances.

Montserrat Volcano Observatory