Vincentian government authorities indicated in a press conference today that La Soufriere — which has been erupting effusively since December — can erupt explosively in a matter of hours or days.
The authorities noted a significant change in volcanic-tectonic (VT) earthquakes and low-level tremors during the early-morning hours of Thursday, April 8.
Media reports from St Vincent’s iWitness News said there have been number of seismic episodes since 3 am. They’ve lasted from 3 to 3:40 am, 5 am to 6:20 am, 8 am to 9 am and again around 10:15 am.
The country experienced another band of tremors around 1 pm during the aforesaid press conference.
iWitness News also reported that another thing the monitoring team noticed Thursday morning was elevated and continuous emission of gas.
These gases have been sustained, which is another indication that fresh magma is coming through, said Professor Richard Robertson — St Vincent’s lead scientist monitoring the volcano.
The scientist is not yet able to say when an explosive eruption might happen.
“We are now into a period where we will not be surprised if sometime in the future we have an explosion or explosive activity,” he said.
The alert level at the La Soufriere volcano is now at to ‘Orange’, BVI News understands. Orange means a highly elevated level of seismicity or fumarolic activity or both. Eruptions may occur with less than 24 hours notice.
The BVI’s largest subgroup of its expat community is said to be from St Vincent.
During the historic opening of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines consular office on Tortola last October, Premier Andrew Fahie confirmed that more than 2,000 Vincentian nationals presently reside in the BVI.
Always look for the fool in the deal. If you don’t find one, it’s you.