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Support volcano monitoring in Guatemala 23 June 2010

Posted by admin in Guatemala, natural hazards, Santa María, volcano monitoring.
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THE SANTIAGUITO VOLCANO OBSERVATORY NEEDS OUR HELP.

Jessica Ball of the Magma Cum Laude blog has been in touch with news of a very worthy cause: supporting volcano monitoring in Guatemala. The government agency charged with monitoring Guatemala’s volcanoes, the Instituto Nacional de Sismología, Volcanología, Meteorología e Hidrología (INSIVUMEH), is staffed by some incredibly dedicated and hard-working men and women who do all they can to keep their people safe from volcanic hazards, but they do not have the equipment they need to do the job as well as it needs to be done. They need everything from computers to rock hammers, tape measures to digital cameras, laser rangefinders to geological hand lenses. That’s where you can help.

The International Volcano Monitoring Fund (IVMF) was set up by Dr Jeff Witter to help improve volcano monitoring in developing countries. Jessica Ball has done much of her volcanological research on Santiaguito volcano in Guatemala, and she has got together with the IVMF and INSIVUMEH to compile a list of what is needed and launch a fundraising effort for the Santaguito Volcano Observatory. Please go to Jessica’s page about the fundraiser at Magma Cum Laude, and to the IVMF’s Guatemala page, to find out what your donations can buy and how you can help.

This is a very worthy cause in which a few dollars can make a big difference: please help if you can.

The Volcanism Blog

Guatemala: explosive eruption at Santiaguito 27 April 2010

Posted by admin in activity reports, eruptions, Guatemala, Santa María, volcanoes.
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The Santiaguito lava dome complex at Guatemala’s Santa María volcano erupted yesterday, producing four explosions between approximately 18:50 and 20:00 local time and throwing an ash-laden plume up to altitudes of between 7.3 and 8.5 km. The Instituto Nacional de Sismología, Vulcanología, Meteorología e Hidrología (Insivumeh) described two of the explosions as ‘strong’ and the other two as ‘moderate to strong’ in intensity. Guatemalan newspaper El Periódico reports that ash reached 8.5 km above sea level, while Washington VAAC gives the altitude as FL 240 (24,000 feet / 7.3 km) in a volcanic ash advisory issued at 14:44 GMT on 26 April (later advisories issued at 15:15 GMT and 17:43 GMT say that some ash was reported at FL280 (28,000 feet / 8.5 km) and FL300 (30,000 feet / 9.1 km).

According to an Insivumeh volcanologist quoted by El Periódico, people in local communities were alarmed by small earthquakes during the eruption, and ashfall created visibility problems on nearby roads. Local people had noticed rumblings from the volcano during the night of 25 April, reports El Quetzalteco. The districts of Quetzaltenango, Totonicapán, San Marcos, Huehuetenango, Suchitepéquez, Retalhuleu and Sololá have been affected by ashfall, and classes in local schools have been suspended. Largely because of the ashfall hazard, Guatemala’s state emergencies agency, the Coordinadora Nacional para la Reducción de Desastres (Conred), has raised the alert level at Santiaguito to Orange (Naranja).

Research Note. For expert insight into ever-active Santiaguito, check out Jessica Ball’s richly-illustrated reports at Magma Cum Laude: Santiaguito Volcano Observatory (19 March 2010), Looking backward: Past eruptions at Volcán Santa Maria (15 March 2010), Santiaguito lava dome complex (27 March 2009), Lava domes, coffee, and a little bit of shaking (20 March 2009). Santiaguito is the focus of Jessica’s work on lava domes. Highly recommended.

News
El volcán Santiaguito hace declarar alerta naranjaEl Periódico de Guatemala, 26 April 2010
Alerta Naranja por ceniza de volcán – El Quetzalteco, 27 April 2010
Declaran en Guatemala alerta naranja por erupción de volcán Santiaguito – ABC, 27 April 2010
Volcano spews sand, ash over GuatemalaSydney Morning Herald, 27 April 2010

Information
Global Volcanism Program: Santa María – summary information for Santa María (1402-03=)
Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanología, Meteorología e Hidrologia – main page for Guatemala’s volcanological authority

The Volcanism Blog

Ashfall from Fuego and Santiaguito 17 March 2009

Posted by admin in activity reports, Fuego, Guatemala, natural hazards, Santa María.
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Guatemala’s Prensa Libre newspaper reported yesterday that Fuego and Santiaguito volcanoes (the Santiaguito lava dome complex is part of Santa María volcano) are producing ‘large quantities of ash’, and that the aviation and emergency authorities have been alerted. The report says that the two volcanoes were producing powerful explosions and erupting incandescent material and steam, with ashfall being reported up to 8-12km distant. In the village of Sangre de Cristo, near Fuego, drinking water and food have been contaminated by ash.

Washington VAAC has no current volcanic ash advisories for Fuego, although emissions were reported 12-13 March 2009. An ash cloud was reported from Santa María on 15 March. The Instituto de Sismología, Vulcanología y Meteorología of Guatemala (Insivumeh) has been reporting light ashfall from Fuego and light to moderate ashfall from Santiaguito.

The Santiaguito dome complex has been almost continuously active since its appearance in 1922, within the crater left by the huge eruption (VEI=6?) of Santa María in 1902.

News
Volcanes de Fuego y Santiaguito lanzan grandes cantidades de cenizaPrensa Libre, 16 March 2009

Information
Global Volcanism Program: Fuego – summary information for Fuego (1402-09=)
Global Volcanism Program: Santa María – summary information for Santa María (1402-03=)
Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanología, Meteorología e Hidrologia – main page for Guatemala’s volcanological authority

The Volcanism Blog

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