La Soufriere: Explosive activity appears to have ended at this time

By Demion McTair. Updated 9:40 p.m., Thursday, April 15, 2021, Atlantic Standard Time (GMT-4).

The result of a pyroclastic flow in the northwest. Photo: STV Online.

Kingstown, St. Vincent: Explosive activity at the La Soufriere volcano “appears to have ended at this time,” the Seismic Research Center said Thursday in a scientific update.

But, the volcano continues to erupt, the Center said.

“Its current pattern of seismic activity may indicate growth of a lava dome, but this has not yet been confirmed,”the center said.

“The last of a series of bands of tremor ended at about 5:40 am and, unlike all the previous bands, had no strong venting or explosive activity associated with it,” it added.

La Soufriere began erupting explosively on April 9, 2021, after months of continued effusive eruptions which began on December 27, 2020.

The volcano exploded several times sending ash plumes miles into the sky and spreading ash across St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Barbados and other countries.

Devastation in the northeast captured by STV Online.

So far, the explosive eruptions have contributed largely to infrastructural and agricultural damage in the northern parts of mainland, St. Vincent.

Pyroclastic Density Currents (PDCs) have swept through valleys, lahars and other mudflows have removed parts of roads, bridges, and other throughways, and heavy ashfall has caused roofs of houses to collapse.

The eruptions have also displaced thousands of people, 4, 136 of which are in state-operated shelters, and 3,275 of which have registered as being housed in private shelters.

NEMO Shelter Report – Thursday, April 15, 2021.

A national water crisis has also been created as river catchments have been inundated with volcanic ash. Some communities have been without pipe-borne water for more than five days.

The State-run Central Water and Sewage Authority – CWSA has been working to get systems back on board.

Humanitarian aid has been coming to the country from friendly governments, organizations and private individuals.

The country’s road to recovery is still obscure as it is not clear when the volcano will cease its eruptions.

Full scientific update issued at 6:00p.m.

La Soufriere SCIENTIFIC UPDATE – 15/04/21 6:00PM

  1. Seismic activity at La Soufrière, St Vincent has changed its pattern.
  2. The last of a series of bands of tremor ended at about 5:40 am and, unlike all the previous bands, had no strong venting or explosive activity associated with it.
  3. The seismic network has now recorded a near constant swarm of long- period and hybrid earthquakes, with three brief episodes of low-level tremor each lasting less than 30 minutes.
  4. The continuous GPS network shows a signal consistent with
    depressurization of the magma reservoir following the initiation of explosive activity on 9th April 2021.
  5. The volcano continues to erupt although explosive activity appears to have ended at this time.
  6. Its current pattern of seismic activity may indicate growth of a lava dome, but this has not yet been confirmed.
  7. Explosions and accompanying ashfall, of similar or larger magnitude, could restart in the future.
  8. Visit the International Volcanic Hazard Health Network for information and resources on living with volcanic ash: http://www.ivhhn.org/information

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