British Virgin Islands

Thursday, May 06, 2021

SVG volcanic emission could reach VI- DDM

SVG volcanic emission could reach VI- DDM

The chance of volcanic emissions from La Soufriere in St Vincent reaching the [British] Virgin Islands is low but there is a reasonable worst-case scenario of it happening, the Department of Disaster Management (DDM) has said.

La Soufriere erupted on April 9, 2021, and there have been frequent explosions, including a major blast on Monday, April 12, 2021, that sent ash and hot gas into the air.

More than 16,000 people have been forced to evacuate their homes and the resulting fall of ash-covered large parts of St Vincent in a thick layer of dust.

The ash has spread to neighbouring Barbados, 120 miles east of St Vincent.

The chance of volcanic emissions from La Soufriere in St Vincent reaching the [British] Virgin Islands is low but there is a reasonable worst-case scenario of it happening, the Department of Disaster Management (DDM) has said.


Shift of winds could bring volcanic emissions- DDM


And according to DDM today, April 13, 2021, volcanic emissions could reach the Northeast Caribbean, which the VI is a part of.

“A shift of winds at the lower levels of the atmosphere could result in volcanic emissions, ash and dust, reaching the Northeast Caribbean (which the BVI is a part of) from La Soufrière Saint Vincent (volcano),” DDM wrote.

DDM said emission include carbon dioxide and sulfur dioxide.

A car, road and scenery in St Vincent covered in volcanic ash.


Impacts would be ‘minor’


“If it does happen, the impacts would be minor, at most, but the threat of health problems would be elevated, for mainly unusually sensitive people, such as asthmatics, people with respiratory or heart disease, the elderly and children.”

DDM said updates will be given as changes are made.

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