St. Vincent Volcano Eruption Update: Caribbean Evacuations Triggered, Displacing 16,000 People

TOPSHOT - This April 9, 2021, image courtesy Zen Punnett shows the eruption of La Soufriere Volcano from Rillan Hill in Saint Vincent. - La Soufriere erupted Friday for the first time in 40 years on the Caribbean island of Saint Vincent, prompting thousands of people to evacuate, seismologists said. The blast from the volcano, sent plumes of ash 20,000 feet (6,000 meters) into the air, the local emergency management agency said. The eruption was confirmed by the UWI center. (Photo by ZEN PUNNETT / Zen Punnett / AFP) (Photo by ZEN PUNNETT/Zen Punnett/AFP via Getty Images)

St. Vincent Volcano Eruption Update: Caribbean Evacuations Triggered, Displacing 16,000 People

The “explosive event” blanketed the Caribbean island in a layer of ash.

Published 3 weeks ago

Written by Paul Meara

Residents of the Caribbean island of St. Vincent are experiencing power outages and water supplies have reportedly been cut off as the La Soufrière volcano erupted on Friday (April 9 ) and continues to be a threat to the Grenadines island chain.

According to the BBC, 16,000 people have been forced to evacuate their homes as scientists warn that eruptions could continue for days or even weeks. 

Emergency officials described the “explosive event” as a “battle zone” and additional damage and destruction was likely.

"Massive power outage following another explosive event at La Soufriere Volcano,” NEMO SVG, an emergency management organization, wrote in a tweet. “Lightning, thunder and rumblings."

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According to NEMO SVG, white-colored ash has begun to harden on the ground after rain showers hit St. Vincent the next night.

Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves said water supplies to most of the island had been cut off. Additionally, its airspace is closed because of the smoke and thick plumes of volcanic ash moving through the atmosphere, the BBC reports.

"We don't know how much more is going to come out... so far, we have done well in that nobody got injured, nobody is dead," Mr. Gonsalves said, according to NBC News.

The Barbados Defense Force has reportedly been deployed to St. Vincent to provide humanitarian assistance.

 

(Photo by ZEN PUNNETT/Zen Punnett/AFP via Getty Images)

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