GUATEMALA CITY – Volcano Fuego, located some 50 kilometers (31 miles) from Guatemala City, recorded on Tuesday 12 explosions per hour, leading to a thick column of smoke that reached 5,000 meters (16,404 feet) above sea level.
According to a statement by Insivumeh, Guatemala’s volcanic monitor, the explosions – which range from weak to strong – are scattering ashes up to a distance of some 20 kilometers toward the east and northeast as per the direction of the winds.
Owing to the wind and the force of the explosions, ash was swept to the colonial city of Antigua Guatemala and also in Alotenango, Villa Nueva and San Miguel Petapa.
The statement did not rule out the possibility of the ash reaching the capital and urged local authorities to stay alert.
The volcano, 3,763 meters in height and situated on the borders of Chimaltenango, Escuintla and Sacatepequez departments, has erupted 10 times in 2017.
Fuego and Santiaguito, along with Pacaya – which is some 2,252 meters high and located in the Escuintla department – are the most active of Guatemala’s 32 volcanoes.