Montserrat Volcano Observatory

Morning Update
Report for the period 16:00 07 September
to 07:00 08 September 1996

The level of activity at the Soufriere Hills volcano during the night was about the same as that observed during the previous reporting period. The activity was dominated by small- to moderate-sized rockfalls from the flanks of the growing lava dome and several volcano-tectonic earthquakes. The background tremor amplitude was moderate on all the stations throughout most of the update period because of the high winds associated with Tropical Storm Hortense. All the seismic stations which were operational before the storm are still working well.

Visibility was very poor during the early morning period because of low cloud cover on the volcano and rain.

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. The rainfall will make some ash-coated roadways very slippery so extreme care should still 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