Warning in Colombia about possible volcanic eruption

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Saturday, November 12, 2005

The Galeras volcano could have an eruption at any moment according to Julian Villaruel, director of the Colombian Institute of Geology and Mines (Ingeominas).

The spokesman for the Volcanoes and Seismologic Observatory of Pasto [1], Colombia, explained that the Galeras volcano has registered a level two activity in a scale of 1 to 4, which means that an eruption is likely to happen in days or weeks.

He declared that some of the measurements taken have been analyzed by scientific institutions in the US that have confirmed the likelihood of an eruption.

The observatory and the local committee for the prevention and reduction of disasters (CREPAD) will continue to keep a watchful eye on the behavior of the volcano in order to instruct the residents about the risks and the evacuation routes in case of eruption.

The Galeras summit is 4276 meters (14,028 feet) above sea level. The last time it registered some activity was in 2004. Pasto, at its base, is a city of about 400 thousand people. There are 5 other towns around the Galeras skirts. 60,000 people live around the influence zone and about 9,000 live in the area of highest risk.